Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Of uncertain origin. These possibilities have been suggested:
- Irish sionnachuighim (“I play the fox”).
- Spanish chanada, a shortening of charranada (“trick", "deceit”).
- Palatinate German schinägeln (“to work hard”), from the peddler's argot term Schenigelei ("work").
- French ces manigances (“these fraudulent schemes”).
shenanigan (plural shenanigans)
- (countable) A deceitful confidence trick, or mischief causing discomfort or annoyance.
- I spotted his next shenanigan — saw it coming — and so avoided being fooled.
- (rare) singular form of
shenanigans — see shenanigans