trojan horse
fifth column fifth` col"umn, n. [from a statement during the Spanish Civil War (1936) that the Falange had four columns of soldiers marching on the city, and a fifth column ``already there'' (i.e. sympathizers inside the Republican lines).] 1. a group of persons inside the battle lines of a territory engaged in a conflict, who secretly sympathize with the enemy, and who engage in espionage or sabotage; -- sometimes also referred to as a {trojan horse}. [RP]

2. Hence, any faction of persons within a group who secretly sympathize with an enemy, especially those who engage in activities harmful to the group; an enemy in one's midst; a group of traitors. [RP]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Trojan horse — Tro‧jan horse [ˌtrəʊdʒn ˈhɔːs ǁ ˌtroʊdʒn ˈhɔːrs] noun [countable usually singular] 1. something that looks attractive but that is intended to deceive: • The bank s CEO described Japanese investments in the UK as a Trojan horse, destroying… …   Financial and business terms

  • Trojan Horse — the Trojan Horse a wooden horse used by Greek soldiers to trick their enemies the Trojans during the Trojan War. The Greeks hid inside a large wooden model of a horse and were taken into Troy by Trojan soldiers, who thought that it was a gift …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Trojan horse — n 1.) something that seems ordinary but that is used to hide someone s real intentions ▪ These investment arrangements could be Trojan horses for anti competitive monopolies. 2.) a type of computer ↑virus ▪ A bug in the browser lets servers… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Trojan horse — Tro jan horse , n. [from the incident described in Homer s Iliad.] 1. (Classical mythology) a large hollow wooden horse built by Greek soldiers besieging Troy during the Trojan War, and left as a gift when they pretended to abandon their seige.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Trojan horse — n. 1. Gr. Legend in the Trojan War, a huge, hollow wooden horse with Greek soldiers hidden inside that is left at the gates of Troy: the Trojans bring it into the city, thinking it a gift, and the soldiers creep out and open the gates to the rest …   English World dictionary

  • Trojan Horse — ► NOUN ▪ something intended to undermine or secretly overthrow an enemy or opponent. ORIGIN from the hollow wooden statue of a horse in which the ancient Greeks are said to have concealed themselves in order to enter Troy …   English terms dictionary

  • Trojan horse — noun count someone or something that seems good or helpful to a person or organization but whose real purpose is to harm or destroy them a. COMPUTING a program that seems useful but is designed to be harmful, for example by destroying information …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • Trojan Horse — The Trojan Horse was part of the Trojan War, as told in Virgil s Latin epic poem The Aeneid . The events of this take place after Homer s Iliad , and before Homer s Odyssey .LegendThis incident is mentioned in the Odyssey :: What a thing was this …   Wikipedia

  • Trojan horse — [[t]tro͟ʊʤən hɔ͟ː(r)s[/t]] Trojan horses N COUNT: usu sing, oft N for/of n (disapproval) If you describe a person or thing as a Trojan horse, you mean that they are being used to hide someone s true purpose or intentions. Was Colombo the emissary …   English dictionary

  • Trojan horse — 1. Class. Myth. a gigantic hollow wooden horse, left by the Greeks upon their pretended abandonment of the siege of Troy. The Trojans took it into Troy and Greek soldiers concealed in the horse opened the gates to the Greek army at night and… …   Universalium

  • Trojan horse — UK / US noun [countable] Word forms Trojan horse : singular Trojan horse plural Trojan horses a) someone or something that seems good or helpful to a person or organization but whose real purpose is to harm or destroy them b) computing a program… …   English dictionary

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