handicap

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From hand in cap, in reference to holding the game stakes in a cap.

Noun[edit]

handicap (plural handicaps)

  1. Something that prevents, hampers, or hinders.
    Age is often a handicap.
    • 1910, Emerson Hough, chapter 1, The Purchase Price:
      Captain Edward Carlisle [] felt a curious sensation of helplessness seize upon him as he met her steady gaze, [] ; he could not tell what this prisoner might do. He cursed the fate which had assigned such a duty, cursed especially that fate which forced a gallant soldier to meet so superb a woman as this under handicap so hard.
  2. An allowance of a certain amount of time or distance in starting, granted in a race (or other contest of skill) to the competitor possessing disadvantages; or an additional weight or other hindrance imposed upon the one possessing advantages, in order to equalize, as much as possible, the chances of success.
    The older boy won, even though his opponent had been granted a handicap of five meters.
    A handicap in chess often involves removal of the queen's rook.
  3. (sometimes considered offensive) The disadvantage itself, in particular physical or mental disadvantages of people.
  4. A race, for horses or men, or any contest of agility, strength, or skill, in which there is an allowance of time, distance, weight, or other advantage, to equalize the chances of the competitors.
  5. (obsolete, card game) An old card game.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Samuel Pepys to this entry?)

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

Verb[edit]

handicap (third-person singular simple present handicaps, present participle handicapping, simple past and past participle handicapped)

  1. (transitive) To encumber with a handicap in any contest.
  2. (transitive, by extension) To place at disadvantage.
    The candidate was heavily handicapped.
  3. To estimate betting odds.
    Grandpa Andy would buy the racing form the day ahead of time so he could handicap the race before he even arrived at the track.

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

Finnish[edit]

Noun[edit]

handicap

  1. (anglicism) handicap (allowance)

Declension[edit]

Synonyms[edit]


French[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

handicap m (plural handicaps)

  1. handicap

Italian[edit]

Noun[edit]

handicap m (invariable)

  1. handicap (disability; horserace)

Portuguese[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

  • Hyphenation: han‧di‧cap

Etymology[edit]

From English handicap.

Noun[edit]

handicap m (uncountable)

  1. handicap, disadvantage
  2. advantage

Usage notes[edit]

Due to misunderstanding of the original meaning, the word handicap in Portuguese can either be used to express advantage or disadvantage.