Wordsmith.org: the magic of words


A.Word.A.Day

About | Media | Search | Contact  


Home

Today's Word

Yesterday's Word

Archives

FAQ



Jul 10, 2013
This week's theme
Words from poker

This week's words
poker-faced
four-flush
penny-ante
standpat
blue chip

Bookmark and Share Facebook Twitter Digg MySpace Bookmark and Share
A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

penny-ante

PRONUNCIATION:
(PEN-ee AN-tee)

MEANING:
adjective: Trivial.
noun: A transaction involving very small sums.

ETYMOLOGY:
In poker, penny ante is a game in which the bet is one cent (or other small amount). The term is coined from penny (the smallest denomination of currency) + ante (stake, share, cost), from the stake put up by a player in poker before receiving one's cards, from Latin ante- (before). Earliest documented use: 1855.

USAGE:
"By Bernie Madoff standards, Conrad Black's crimes are not just on the small side. They're penny-ante."
Bryan Burrough; The Convictions Of Conrad Black; Vanity Fair (New York); Oct 2011.

See more usage examples of penny-ante in Vocabulary.com's dictionary.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
The more powerful and original a mind, the more it will incline towards the religion of solitude. -Aldous Huxley, novelist (1894-1963)

We need your help

Help us continue to spread the magic of words to readers everywhere

Donate

Subscriber Services
Awards | Stats | Links | Privacy Policy
Contribute | Advertise

© 1994-2018 Wordsmith