English Idiom – Pull a fast one.

Meaning – To engage in a deceitful practice or play an unfair trick. This expression refers to deceiving or tricking someone in a clever or unexpected way. It implies that the person who has been deceived has been caught off guard and is now at a disadvantage.

The term fast one refers to a sudden or unexpected move, often used in a game or sport, that catches an opponent off guard.

Idioms Related To Dishonesty or Deceit:

  • Caught red-handed – To be caught in the act. To be found doing something wrong or illegal.
  • Loan shark – Someone who lends people money and charges them an extremely high rate of interest.
  • Smell a rat – To suspect that something is wrong or that something dishonest is happening.
  • Smell fishy– Suspicious.  This idiom is used when something is making us suspicious or when we believe somebody is being dishonest.
  • Swim with sharks – To operate among dangerous or risky people.


When could you use this idiom?

  • You suspect that someone is trying to deceive or trick you.
  • When you notice someone is suddenly changing the rules or conditions of a deal or agreement.
  • You are in a situation when you catch someone in the act of doing something dishonest or sneaky.
  • Someone tries to take advantage of you by offering something that seems too good to be true.


  • “I thought the salesman was being honest with me, but it turns out he was trying to pull a fast one and charge me twice the price.”

In The News:

The Fed Is Trying to Pull a Fast One


  • Is there an idiom like this in your country?

What is an idiom?

An idiom is a word or phrase that is not taken literally.  An idiom is an expression that cannot be understood from the meanings of its individual words, but has a separate meaning of its own.

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