1. A robber, especially one who robs at gunpoint.
2. An outlaw; a gangster.
3. One who cheats or exploits others.
4. Slang A hostile aircraft, especially a fighter aircraft.
make out like a bandit Slang
To be highly successful in a given enterprise.
[Italian bandito, from past participle of bandire, to proclaim, proscribe, banish, probably of Germanic origin; see bhā-2 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.