[uh-buhv-bawrd, -bohrd]

adverb, adjective

in open sight; without tricks, concealment, or disguise: Their actions are open and aboveboard.

Origin of aboveboard

1610–20; above + board; so called from the requirement of keeping the hands above the table or board in order to discourage possible cheating at cards

Synonyms for aboveboard

Antonyms for aboveboard

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for aboveboard

Historical Examples of aboveboard

  • Such espionage pointed to something that was not quite open and aboveboard.

    The Night Riders

    Ridgwell Cullum

  • They were things that didn't seem—what you would call square and aboveboard.

    Fair Harbor

    Joseph Crosby Lincoln

  • Must be willing to Work and Keep House shipshape and aboveboard.

    Cap'n Eri

    Joseph Crosby Lincoln

  • And yet, if it was all aboveboard, he wouldn't have said that!

  • Fundamental bent toward what is clean, manly and aboveboard!

Word Origin and History for aboveboard

1610s, from above and board (n.1). "A figurative expression borrowed from gamesters, who, when they put their hands under the table, are changing their cards." [Johnson]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with aboveboard


see open and aboveboard.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.