Definitions

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

  • n. An action calculated to frustrate an opponent or gain an advantage indirectly or deviously; a maneuver: "A typical ploy is to feign illness, procure medicine, then sell it on the black market” ( Jill Smolowe).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A tactic, strategy, or gimmick.
  • v. To form a column from a line of troops on some designated subdivision.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Sport; frolic.
  • intransitive v. To form a column from a line of troops on some designated subdivision; -- the opposite of deploy.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Employment.
  • n. A harmless frolic; a merrymaking.
  • Milit., to move from line into column: the opposite of deploy.

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

  • n. a maneuver in a game or conversation
  • n. an opening remark intended to secure an advantage for the speaker

Etymologies

Perhaps from employ, employment (obsolete).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Probably abbreviated from deploy. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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