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[jilt] /dʒɪlt/
verb (used with object)
to reject or cast aside (a lover or sweetheart), especially abruptly or unfeelingly.
a woman who jilts a lover.
Origin of jilt
1650-60; earlier jilt harlot, syncopated variant of jillet
Related forms
jilter, noun
unjilted, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for jilt
Historical Examples
  • It was abominable of him to jilt that girl, let alone proposing to me.

    A Top-Floor Idyl George van Schaick
  • She could not jilt him; there was something vulgar in the word!

    The Island Pharisees John Galsworthy
  • We have been thinking that Jim was going to jilt you, Amelia!

    Alas! Rhoda Broughton
  • It means, jilt Miss Nicotine in haste, and repent at leisure.

    Out of the Depths Robert Ames Bennet
  • Harry had been offended to the quick, and had called her a jilt; but yet it might be possible that he would return to her.

    The Claverings Anthony Trollope
  • The staid sober lover—let him take care the pretty Clara does not jilt him.

    Frank Fairlegh Frank E. Smedley
  • He treated the forlorn victim of a woman's jilt as a notable worthy of notable entertainment.

    What Will People Say? Rupert Hughes
  • To be so sordid a jilt, to betray me to such a beast as that!

    Thomas Otway Thomas Otway
  • Written in Mrs. Conney's happiest manner 'Judy a jilt' is a telling story throughout.

  • Pox on her for a jilt, she lies, and has a mind to amuse and laugh at me a day or two longer.

    Thomas Otway Thomas Otway
British Dictionary definitions for jilt


(transitive) to leave or reject (a lover), esp without previous warning: she was jilted at the altar
a woman who jilts a lover
Derived Forms
jilter, noun
Word Origin
C17: from dialect jillet flighty girl, diminutive of proper name Gill
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for jilt

"to deceive (especially after holding out hopes), cheat, trick," 1660s, from the same source as jilt (n.). Related: Jilted; jilting.


1670s, "loose, unchaste woman; harlot;" also "woman who gives hope then dashes it," perhaps ultimately from Middle English gille "lass, wench," a familiar or contemptuous term for a woman or girl (mid-15c.), originally a shortened form of woman's name Gillian (see Jill).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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