- The definition of a gambit is an opening strategy meant to bring on a specific result, particularly a move in chess where a player risks one minor piece for a better position.
An example of a gambit is an opening move in chess of giving up a pawn to open up a king for further movement.
gambit definition by Webster's New World
- Chess an opening in which a pawn or other piece is sacrificed to get an advantage in position
- an opening maneuver, action, or remark intended to gain an advantage or to offer an opinion
Origin: French ; from Old French gambet ; from Spanish gambito, a tripping ; from Italian gamba, a leg ; from Midieval Latin gamba: see gamb
gambit definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- An opening in chess in which a minor piece, or pieces, usually a pawn, is offered in exchange for a favorable position.
- A maneuver, stratagem, or ploy, especially one used at an initial stage.
- A remark intended to open a conversation.
Origin: Ultimately from Spanish gambito, from Italian gambetto, act of tripping someone up in wrestling, from gamba, leg, from Old Italian; see gambol.Usage Note: Critics familiar with the nature of chess gambits have sometimes maintained that the word should not be used in an extended sense except to refer to maneuvers that involve a tactical sacrifice or loss for some advantage. But gambit is well established in the general sense of “maneuver” and in the related sense of “a remark intended to open a conversation,” which usually carries no implication of sacrifice.