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Definition of mountebank


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moun·te·bank  audio  (mount-bngk) KEY 

NOUN:
  1. A hawker of quack medicines who attracts customers with stories, jokes, or tricks.
  2. A flamboyant charlatan.
VERB:
moun·te·banked, moun·te·bank·ing, moun·te·banks
VERB:
intr.
To act as a mountebank.
VERB:
tr.
Archaic
To ensnare or prevail over with trickery.

ETYMOLOGY:
Italian montambanco, from the phrase monta im banco, one gets up onto the bench : monta, one gets up, third person sing. present tense of montare, to get up (from Vulgar Latin *montre; see mount1) + in, on, onto (from Latin; see in-2) + banco, bench (variant of banca, from Old Italian, bench, table, from Old High German bank)


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