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turncoat

[turn-koht]
See more synonyms for turncoat on Thesaurus.com
noun
  1. a person who changes to the opposite party or faction, reverses principles, etc.; renegade.
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Origin of turncoat

First recorded in 1550–60; turn + coat
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for turncoat

defector, informer, spy, double-crosser, fink, tattletale, Judas, sneak, betrayer, snake, snitch, tergiversator, renegade, deserter, conspirator, deceiver, rat, squealer, apostate, quisling

Examples from the Web for turncoat

Contemporary Examples of turncoat

Historical Examples of turncoat

  • Which is another reason for general GS enmity: the turncoat syndrome.

    Attrition

    Jim Wannamaker

  • If he has once been a turncoat, he will be a turncoat again.

    Temporal Power

    Marie Corelli

  • It needs more than the zeal of a turncoat to drive Apollo out of Parnassus.

  • He who passes over from one party to another is at once abused as a "turncoat."

  • I have no use for Jews, especially for a turncoat, and I will see that you get the limit of the court.

    Riches of Grace

    E. E. Byrum


British Dictionary definitions for turncoat

turncoat

noun
  1. a person who deserts one cause or party for the opposite faction; renegade
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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

Word Origin and History for turncoat

n.

1550s, from turn (v.) + coat (n.). Originally one who tried to hide the badge of his party or leader. The expression to turn one's coat "change principles or party" is recorded from 1560s.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper