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snake oil

any of various liquid concoctions of questionable medical value sold as an all-purpose curative, especially by traveling hucksters.
Slang. deceptive talk or actions; hooey; bunkum:
The governor promised to lower taxes, but it was the same old snake oil.
Origin of snake oil
An Americanism dating back to 1925-30
Related forms
snake-oil, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Slang definitions & phrases for snake oil

snake oil


: Kenosha officials watch out for the ''snake-oil salesmen''

noun phrase

A fraudulent remedy: But I have to admit he sounded sincere, like he really believes in that snake oil he's peddling (1927+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with snake oil

snake oil

see under banana oil
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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