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[ney-vuh-ree] /ˈneɪ və ri/
noun, plural knaveries.
action or practice characteristic of a knave.
unprincipled, untrustworthy, or dishonest dealing; trickery.
a knavish act or practice.
Origin of knavery
First recorded in 1520-30; knave + -ery Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for knavery
Historical Examples
  • They know that their knavery is no secret but they don't mind.

    Albert Durer T. Sturge Moore
  • To “resist not evil” seemed to him then only a rather feeble sort of knavery.

    Dr. Sevier George W. Cable
  • From this retreat we could see the proof of knavery in the villages below.

    John Splendid Neil Munro
  • He was very cunning to be sure; but the "afflicted" girls could see through his knavery.

    Dulcibel Henry Peterson
  • Folly and knavery were, for a time, completely in the ascendant.

    Lives of the Engineers Samuel Smiles
  • Of clowns again, of the glory of knavery, and of the eternal type that shall endure.

    Dream Days Kenneth Grahame
  • In truth the depths of this man's knavery were unfathomable.

  • It was an island of happiness, behind these walls, concealed from the knavery of the world.

    The Daughter of an Empress Louise Muhlbach
  • I hold you in the fetters of your own knavery, like a trout on the hook!

    Love and Intrigue Friedrich Schiller
  • It is averse to knavery, to crafty guile and double-dealing.

    Epistle Sermons, Vol. II Martin Luther
British Dictionary definitions for knavery


noun (pl) -eries
a deceitful or dishonest act
dishonest conduct; trickery
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 knavery

1520s, from knave + -ery.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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