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ducks and drakes

[ duhks uhn dreyks ]

noun

  1. Also a pastime in which flat stones or shells are thrown across water so as to skip over the surface several times before sinking.


ducks and drakes

noun

  1. a game in which a flat stone is bounced across the surface of water
  2. make ducks and drakes of
    make ducks and drakes ofplay ducks and drakes withplay at ducks and drakes with to use recklessly; squander or waste


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Word History and Origins

Origin of ducks and drakes1

First recorded in 1575–85; from a fancied likeness to a waterfowl's movements

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Idioms and Phrases

Idioms
  1. play ducks and drakes with, to handle recklessly; squander: Also make ducks and drakes of.

    He played ducks and drakes with his fortune.

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Example Sentences

If I am not mistaken, this young gentleman would play ducks-and-drakes with that in a very short time.

Master Faustus, I know you for a man who plays away his money at ducks-and-drakes, and who has a loose tongue.

The foreshore is all grey stones, round and flat, the sort you'd choose to play what's called ducks-and-drakes.

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Definitions and idiom definitions from Dictionary.com Unabridged, based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

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

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