You don't hear about knaves much these days: it's an older word for a rascal, a scoundrel, or a rogue. It isn't a compliment.

If you read Shakespeare for long, you'll definitely see the word knave more than once. In Shakespeare, an important person like a king or a prince might call a thief a knave. Knaves always tend to be up to trouble. You don't want to trust a knave; knaves lie, deceive, and betray. Today, we might call a knave a "scoundrel" or a "good-for-nothing."

Definitions of knave
  1. noun
    a deceitful and unreliable scoundrel
    synonyms: rapscallion, rascal, rogue, scalawag, scallywag, varlet
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    type of:
    scoundrel, villain
    a wicked or evil person; someone who does evil deliberately
  2. noun
    one of four face cards in a deck bearing a picture of a young prince
    synonyms: jack
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    type of:
    court card, face card, picture card
    one of the twelve cards in a deck bearing a picture of a face
Word Family