[ bak-han-der ]
/ ˈbækˌhæn dər /


a backhanded slap, punch, stroke, or play.
British Slang.
  1. a drink served out of turn to a guest as a bottle or decanter is passed around the table during dessert.
  2. a bribe.

Origin of backhander

First recorded in 1795–1805; backhand + -er1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for backhander

  • A few blows of scorn might suffice—a backhander across the snout, a few swishes with a stick, a kick behind when he turned.

    The Devil's Garden|W. B. Maxwell
  • But no vibration of any such impatience was in Merivales voice, and in his words there was no backhander to answer it.

    The Angel of Pain|E. F. Benson
  • He administered a backhander to Elgood as he spoke, and the next minute Charlie, roused beyond all bearing, had knocked him down.

    St. Winifred's|Frederic W. Farrar

British Dictionary definitions for backhander

/ (ˈbækˌhændə) /


a backhanded stroke or blow
informal an indirect attack
slang a bribe
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