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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 jilting
Historical Examples
  • Is it because you have been jilted yourself, that you want the pleasure of jilting another?

  • For an instant, Laurent had the idea of not marrying at all, of jilting Therese.

    Therese Raquin Emile Zola
  • Six cases of nervous illness are reported as due, either to separation or jilting.

  • "There will be no jilting about the matter," replied Dr. Marsh irritably.

    A Woman's Burden Fergus Hume
  • "There is no question of jilting Lady Kitty," he answered steadily.

    The Quiver 12/1899 Anonymous
  • Folks say Ellen has jilted him just to get square with him for jilting her ages ago.

    Rainbow Valley Lucy Maud Montgomery
  • Just dont tell him that youre thinking of jilting his only daughter for an alien, or hell turn four different shades of purple.

    The Sex Life of the Gods Michael Knerr
  • Would I, her daughter, break my word, would I dishonour myself by jilting a man I had pledged myself to marry?

    Annie Besant Annie Besant
  • Perhaps the jilting hurt worse for the time being, but the necessity of replenishing my funds helped me to forget it somewhat.

    My Life Josiah Flynt
  • I should not like my daughter to begin life by jilting an honest man for the sake of a pretty toy soldier like Alexander.

    Paul Patoff F. Marion Crawford
British Dictionary definitions for jilting


(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 jilting



"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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