verb (used with object), spad·ed, spad·ing.
- in the extreme; positively: He's a hypocrite, in spades.
- without restraint; outspokenly: I told him what I thought, in spades.
Origin of spade1
- (used with a singular or plural verb)the suit so marked: Spades is trump. Spades count double.
- (used with a plural verb)Casino.the winning of seven spades or more.
Origin of spade2
Examples from the Web for spades
Contemporary Examples of spades
Beyoncé certainly delivers it in spades, too—and effortlessly.Bow Down, Bitches: How Beyoncé Turned an Elevator Brawl Into a Perfect Year
December 31, 2014
If laughter is the best medicine, The Comeback made you feel enough pain to need a dose—and then it delivered in spades.‘The Comeback’ Finale: Give Lisa Kudrow All of the Awards
December 29, 2014
Bayonetta may not always be fully-clothed, but she delivers in spades.Bayonetta Is Nintendo’s Graphic, Ass-Kicking Barbie
October 24, 2014
The second he does, her giggle sends the Queen of Spades cascading to the brown tile floor below.Hallucinating Away a Heroin Addiction
May 4, 2014
Philip Seymour Hoffman was found dead with a needle in his arm and envelopes of heroin stamped with an Ace of Spades logo.Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Deadly ‘Ace of Spades' Heroin
February 3, 2014
Historical Examples of spades
Exactly, you can give half of 'em cards and spades and both casinos, Mrs. Wybert.The Spenders
Harry Leon Wilson
That they were spades at all was more than I could make out.Ireland as It Is
Robert John Buckley (AKA R.J.B.)
All day long Bishop and Max have managed to give me the queen of spades.
He had clubs and spades solid, with doubleton heart and diamonds.
Here fell the gallant Captain Cailloux, black as the ace of spades.
- an object or part resembling a spade in shape
- (as modifier)a spade beard
Word Origin for spade
- the black symbol on a playing card resembling a heart-shaped leaf with a stem
- a card with one or more of these symbols or (when pl) the suit of cards so marked, usually the highest ranking of the four
Word Origin for spade
"tool for digging," Old English spadu, from Proto-Germanic *spadon (cf. Old Frisian spada, Middle Dutch spade, Old Saxon spado, Middle Low German spade, German Spaten), from PIE *spe- "long, flat piece of wood" (cf. Greek spathe "wooden blade, paddle," Old English spon "chip of wood, splinter," Old Norse spann "shingle, chip").
To call a spade a spade "use blunt language, call things by right names" (1540s) translates a Greek proverb (known to Lucian), ten skaphen skaphen legein "to call a bowl a bowl," but Erasmus mistook Greek skaphe "trough, bowl" for a derivative of the stem of skaptein "to dig," and the mistake has stuck.
"figure on playing cards," 1590s, probably from Italian spade, plural of spada "sword, spade," from Latin spatha "broad, flat weapon or tool," from Greek spathe "broad blade" (see spade (n.1)). Phrase in spades "in abundance" first recorded 1929 (Damon Runyon), probably from bridge, where spades are the highest-ranking suit.
The invitations to the musicale came sliding in by pairs and threes and spade flushes. [O.Henry, "Cabbages & Kings," 1904]
Derogatory meaning "black person" is 1928, from the color of the playing card symbol.
see call a spade a spade; do the spadework; in spades.