a gentleman's agreement

a gentleman's agreement

or

a gentlemen's agreement

A gentleman's agreement or a gentlemen's agreement is an informal agreement that is not written down but in which people trust one another to do what they have promised. We had no contract; it was done by a gentleman's agreement. I'm hoping we can come to a gentlemen's agreement, Colonel.
See also: agreement

a gentleman's agreement

an arrangement or understanding which is based on the trust of both or all parties, rather than being legally binding.
1991 Charles Anderson Grain: Entrepreneurs There had been a ‘gentleman's agreement’ by the Grain Growers not to enter the markets of Saskatchewan Wheat Pool's predecessor.
See also: agreement

a ˌgentleman’s aˈgreement

(also a ˌgentlemen’s aˈgreement) an agreement, a contract, etc. in which nothing is written down because both people trust each other not to break it: ‘Why don’t you tell him you don’t want to sell it now?’ ‘I can’t possibly. It was a gentleman’s agreement and I must keep to it.’
See also: agreement