If you import or export something without paying customs duties, you smuggle it. All kinds of things have been smuggled over the years: art, alcohol, drugs, animals, even tea!

The verb smuggle has expanded to generally mean to bring something in or out in secret, especially if doing so breaks a rule or a law. Kids may smuggle candy into a movie theater so they don’t have to pay the high prices at the concession stand. You may smuggle Christmas presents into the house so your kids don’t see them. Illegal immigrants may be smuggled into the country for a fee, but if caught they can be deported.

Definitions of smuggle
  1. verb

    import or export without paying customs duties

    smuggled cigarettes across the border”
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    type of:


    bring in from abroad

    sell or transfer abroad

  2. verb

    put, bring, or take in a secretive or furtive manner

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    type of:

    act, move

    perform an action, or work out or perform (an action)

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