Definitions

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

  • noun A scheme or maneuver designed to achieve an objective, as in surprising an enemy or deceiving someone. synonym: wile.
  • noun The devising or execution of such schemes or maneuvers.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun An artifice in war; a plan or scheme for deceiving an enemy.
  • noun Any artifice; a trick by which some advantage is intended to be obtained.
  • noun Synonyms and
  • noun Artifice, Manæuver. Trick, etc. See artifice.
  • noun Deception, plot, trap, device, snare, dodge, contrivance.

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

  • noun An artifice or trick in war for deceiving the enemy; hence, in general, artifice; deceptive device; secret plot; evil machination.

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

  • noun A deceptive tactic designed to gain the upper hand. Typically, involves underhanded dealings and obfuscation.

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

  • noun an elaborate or deceitful scheme contrived to deceive or evade
  • noun a maneuver in a game or conversation

Etymologies

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

[Middle English, from Old French stratageme, from Old Italian stratagemma, from Latin stratēgēma, from Greek, from stratēgein, to be a general, from stratēgos, general : stratos, army; see ster- in Indo-European roots + agein, to lead; see ag- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French stratageme, from Latin strategema, from Ancient Greek στρατήγεμα (stratēgema, "the act of a general, a piece of generalship"), from strategein ("to be a general, command an army"), from στρατηγός (stratēgos, "a general, the leader or commander of an army"); see strategy.

Examples

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