Learn 20 Expressions Related to Betrayal

Betrayal can be a devastating experience, and its impact is often reflected in our language. In this blog post, we will explore 20 idioms and phrasal verbs related to betrayal. Each expression includes a brief definition and an example sentence to help you understand and use these phrases effectively.

1. Stab in the Back

Meaning: Betray secretly.
Example: She felt it was a stab in the back.

2. Sell Out

Meaning: Betray for personal gain.
Example: He sold out his friends for money.

3. Double-Cross

Meaning: Betray someone who trusts you.
Example: He double-crossed his partner in crime.

4. Turncoat

Meaning: Someone who switches loyalty.
Example: He was a turncoat during the war.

5. Rat Out

Meaning: Inform on someone.
Example: She ratted out her accomplice to the police.

6. Two-Faced

Meaning: Deceptive or hypocritical.
Example: Her two-faced behavior shocked everyone.

7. Cross Someone

Meaning: Betray or deceive.
Example: He crossed his best friend in business.

8. Turn One’s Back

Meaning: Abandon or ignore.
Example: They turned their backs on him.

9. Sell Down the River

Meaning: Betray for personal advantage.
Example: He was sold down the river by his boss.

10. Bite the Hand That Feeds

Meaning: Betray a benefactor.
Example: Don’t bite the hand that feeds you.

11. Pull the Rug Out

Meaning: Withdraw support suddenly.
Example: They pulled the rug out from under him.

12. Play Both Ends Against the Middle

Meaning: Manipulate two sides for gain.
Example: She played both ends against the middle.

13. Throw Under the Bus

Meaning: Sacrifice someone for self.
Example: He threw his colleague under the bus.

14. Feather One’s Nest

Meaning: Enrich oneself at others’ expense.
Example: He feathered his nest by betraying friends.

15. Break Faith

Meaning: Violate trust.
Example: They broke faith with their partners.

16. Foul One’s Own Nest

Meaning: Harm one’s own interests.
Example: He fouled his own nest by lying.

17. Backstab

Meaning: Betray secretly.
Example: She was known for her backstabbing ways.

18. Turn Traitor

Meaning: Become disloyal.
Example: He turned traitor during the negotiations.

19. Go Back on One’s Word

Meaning: Fail to keep a promise.
Example: He went back on his word about the deal.

20. Play Judas

Meaning: Betray someone.
Example: She played Judas and betrayed her team.

expressions related to Betrayal