Feint refers to a deceptive or misleading movement, action, or speech that is meant to distract or deceive an opponent, adversary, or audience.


US English

UK English

Part of Speech



Deception, ruse, bluff, pretense, trick, subterfuge, sham, ploy, stratagem, tactic


Reality, honesty, truthfulness, candor

Word Forms

Part of Speech Words
Noun feint, feints
Verb feint, feinted, feints, feinting
Adjective None
Adverb None

Example Sentences

  • The boxer’s feint left hook caused his opponent to lower his guard, allowing him to land a powerful right hand punch.

  • The politician’s feint of concern for the poor was quickly exposed when his policies only benefitted the wealthy.

  • The soccer player’s feint caused the defender to commit to the wrong side, giving him an open shot on goal.

  • The detective used a feint to get the suspect to reveal their true motive for the crime.


Feint is often used in the context of sports or military maneuvers, where the goal is to distract or deceive an opponent in order to gain an advantage. In sports, feints can take the form of a fake shot, a head fake, or a body movement meant to confuse the opponent. In military tactics, a feint may involve a diversionary attack or a false retreat designed to lure the enemy into a trap.

Feint can also be used more broadly to refer to any kind of deceptive or misleading behavior, such as pretending to be interested in someone or something in order to gain an advantage or to manipulate a situation. In this sense, feint is often used negatively, as it implies a lack of honesty or authenticity.

Feint comes from the Old French word feinte, meaning “trick” or “deception,” which is derived from the Latin word fingere, meaning “to shape” or “to invent.” The suffix -t added to the end of feinte creates the noun form of the word. The verb form of feint is to feint, meaning to make a deceptive or misleading movement or action.