AskDefine | Define backstairs

Dictionary Definition

backstairs adj : secret and sly or sordid; "backstairs gossip"; "his low backstairs cunning"- A.L.Guerard; "backstairs intimacies"; "furtive behavior" [syn: backstair, furtive] n : a second staircase at the rear of a building

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Noun

  1. a staircase at the rear of a building, or one normally only used by servants etc
    ''It is consequently my degrading duty to serve this upstart as First Lord of the Treasury, Lord Chief Justice, Commander-in-Chief, Lord High Admiral, Master of the Buckhounds, Groom of the Back Stairs, Archbishop of Titipu, and Lord Mayor, both acting and elect, all rolled into one. -- W.S. Gilbert, The Mikado''

Adjective

  1. clandestine, secret or furtive

Synonyms

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

back-door, clandestine, covert, feline, furtive, hidlings, hole-and-corner, hugger-mugger, privy, quiet, shifty, skulking, slinking, slinky, sly, sneaking, sneaky, stealthy, surreptitious, under-the-counter, under-the-table, undercover, underground, underhand, underhanded, unobtrusive
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