Green’s Dictionary of Slang

con v.

[abbr. SE confidence trick]
(orig. US)

1. (also con along) to fool a victim in one or another form of confidence trick.

[US]Ade Artie (1963) 25: Do n’t try to con me with no such talk.
[US]‘O. Henry’ ‘The Marionettes’ in Rolling Stones (1913) 79: It were vain to attempt to con such men.
[US]E. Wittmann ‘Clipped Words’ in DN IV:ii 138: con, from confidence. To swindle.
[US]A.J. Liebling ‘The Jollity Building’ in Just Enough Liebling (2004) 259: He asked me for a loan of three dollars so he could get his teeth out of hock to con a sucker.
[UK]N&Q Nov. 116/2: Con. To inveigle an individual (either a criminal or an informant) into doing something by verbal trickery [DA].
[US]Goldin et al. DAUL 47/2: Con along (or Con). To practice the con.
[US]Kerouac On The Road (1972) 10: He was conning me and I knew it […] and he knew I knew.
[US]J. Mills Panic in Needle Park (1971) 11: The addict will beg for it, walk miles for it, wait hours for it, con for it.
[US]E. Torres Carlito’s Way 32: She was going to con a con man. Ha!
[UK]P. Bailey Eng. Madam 57: He was a different kind of con man, though. He conned with class.
[Aus]B. Ellem Doing Time 24: When I first come in I was conned a lot, I suppose I was a real sucker, a square head, and the other crims took me down for what they could.
[Aus]J. Byrell Lairs, Urgers & Coat-Tuggers 47: [I]t was once said that at the Marble Bar that you could be earbashed by Henry Parkes, manipulated by Mark Foy, recited to by Banjo Paterson [...] and conned by Cyril The Dip all in the space of one arvo’s drinking session.
[Scot]I. Welsh Filth 37: A sponging alcoholic jakey who manages to con rich liberal wankers intae believing that he’s some fucking intellectual.
[UK]Indep. Rev. 26 Jan. 16: Bradley also said he had never conned anybody who couldn’t afford it.
[Aus]C. Hammer Opal Country 291: ‘He was boasting about how he conned you’.

2. to persuade, to coax (without criminal intent); usu. as con someone into.

[US]C.L. Cullen Tales of the Ex-Tanks 309: Well, we both started out to con that young man.
[US]G. Bronson-Howard Enemy to Society 294: She says as how Steve wasn’t tuh blame fer makin’ th’ touch ’cause she’d ’conned him into it.
[US]D. Runyon ‘The Lily of St. Pierre’ in Runyon on Broadway (1954) 141: Louie [...] cons her into coming over there to him.
[US]B. Schulberg Harder They Fall (1971) 221: I try to con him out of it [i.e. a foolish plan].
[US]B. Schulberg On the Waterfront (1964) 14: I look to con him out of my way with some soft soap.
[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Mama Black Widow 67: He tried to con the cops he didn’t know.
[UK]P. Fordham Inside the Und. 110: Respectable people conned into business enterprises with strange fellow-directors.
[UK]A. Sayle Train to Hell 59: He’s conned Methuen into letting him write this book.
[Aus]M.B. ‘Chopper’ Read Chopper From The Inside 89: The Turk tried to con me to go outside.
[US]J. Stahl Plainclothes Naked (2002) 109: The trick was not to con himself that she was solid if she wasn’t.
[US]D. Winslow ‘Sunset’ in Broken 182: [T]he same person who can be conned into putting down for the bond [etc].

3. to tell stories, to fantasize.

[US]E. Hunter ‘. . . Or Leave It Alone’ in Jungle Kids (1967) 55: Don’t con me, cop [...] They’ll give me the Lexington choice.
[UK]T. Keyes All Night Stand 63: Gerry conning away like mad about some improbable situation.
[US]J. Ellroy Brown’s Requiem 158: Don’t worry, I’m not conning you.

In phrases

con out of (v.)

to trick someone into handing over or giving up something they would prefer to hold on to.

G. Burgess Find the Woman 276: ‘I suppose you think you can con him out of his money,’ snarled O'Shea.
[US]J. Mitchell McSorley’s Wonderful Saloon (2001) 151: I had a woman who had been conned out of eighteen hundred bucks.
[UK]F. Norman Bang To Rights 132: Some geezer who was doing his lagging for conning some old dear out of a few grand.
[US]J. Mills Panic in Needle Park (1971) 29: You never knew when a good connection might walk by, or a trick Helen had been looking for, or someone you knew you could con out of a buck or two.
[US]‘Iceberg Slim’ Pimp 17: What they didn’t con him out of he lost in the cheat crap joints.
con up (v.)

(Aus.) to charm a woman; the ultimate aim being seduction.

[Aus]C. Bowles G’DAY 9: MACKA: What about we try an con up those two tarts inner corner?