trick or treat


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trick or treat

Give me a treat of some kind or I will play a trick on you! (The formulaic expression said by children after they ring someone's doorbell and the door is answered on Halloween. It is now understood to mean simply that the child is requesting a treat of some kind—candy, fruit, popcorn, etc.) "Trick or treat!" cried Jimmy when the door opened. Mr. Franklin opened the door to find four very small children dressed like flowers standing silently on his doorstep. After a moment, he said, "Isn't anyone going to say 'Trick or treat'?"
See also: treat, trick

trick or treat

A greeting by children asking for treats on Halloween and threatening to play a trick on those who refuse to give them. For example, The children went from house to house, shouting "Trick or treat!" [c. 1940]
See also: treat, trick
References in periodicals archive ?
Centre manager Wendy Barber said: "Children love to trick or treat and to get into the Hallowe'en spirit.
We are delighted to be able to give the children the opportunity to trick or treat in the safe confines of Cannon Park.
Of course, parents play a role in early economic training when they load the kids in the car and drive them to higher income areas to increase their trick or treat take.
In the spirit of trick or treat revelers, Hostway, a leading provider of Web hosting services, announced it would give all new Web hosting customers free setup for hosting and ecommerce accounts on Halloween.
Send a chill down a trick or treater's spine with ice-cold Trick or Treat Pops.
Other Halloween toys include Scooby Doo, Porcelain Trick or Treat Doll and Halloween Barbie Dolls as well as our electronic items like the Halloween Wack n' Waddle, Happy Face, Boo Buddies and Shaking Spider.
Their Kids to Trick or Treat This Year, Hundreds of Thousands of
com site will go "dark" as an invitation for users to trick or treat online.