Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To cooperate secretly in an illegal or wrongful action; collude.
  • intransitive verb To scheme; plot.
  • intransitive verb To feign ignorance of or fail to take measures against a wrong, thus implying tacit encouragement or consent.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • In biology, to be connivent.
  • To wink.
  • Hence To wink, or refrain from looking, in a figurative sense, as at a culpable person or act; give aid or encouragement by silence or forbearance; conceal knowledge of a fault or wrong: followed by at (formerly sometimes with on).
  • To be in secret complicity; have a furtive or clandestine understanding: followed by with: as, to connive with one in a wrongful act.
  • To waive objection; act as if satisfied; acquiesce: used absolutely.
  • To tamper: followed by with.
  • To shut one's eyes to; wink at; tacitly permit.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb R. & Obs. To shut the eyes to; to overlook; to pretend not to see.
  • intransitive verb obsolete To open and close the eyes rapidly; to wink.
  • intransitive verb To close the eyes upon a fault; to wink (at); to fail or forbear by intention to discover an act; to permit a proceeding, as if not aware of it; -- usually followed by at.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb to cooperate with others secretly in order to commit a crime; to collude
  • verb to plot or scheme
  • verb to pretend to be ignorant of something in order to escape blame
  • verb to be a wench

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb encourage or assent to illegally or criminally
  • verb form intrigues (for) in an underhand manner

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Latin cōnīvēre, connīvēre, to close the eyes.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Circa 1600, from French conniver, from Latin connīveō ("wink"), or directly from Latin, from com- ("together") + base akin to nictō ("I wink"), from Proto-Indo-European *knei-gwh- (“to bend”). See also English nictate ("to wink"), from same Latin base.

Examples

Comments

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  • from latin: conniveo, -nixi to wink at: a twinkle with the eye

    March 16, 2009