pretence

pretence
also pretense AmE noun (singular, uncountable)
1 an attempt to pretend that something is true
(+ that): Susie abandoned the pretence that she didn't want to go to the party. | keep up the pretence of being/doing sth: How long are you going to keep up the pretence of being ill? | under (the) pretence of sth: John waited for her under pretence of tying his shoelaces. | make a pretence of doing sth: Tollitt made no pretence of hiding his surprise.
2 under/on false pretences if you do something under false pretences, you do it by pretending that something is true: Mellors obtained credit under false pretences.
3 no pretence to superiority/faith/education etc no claim that you are superior 1 (4) etc: a simple man, with little pretence to education

Longman dictionary of contemporary English. 2004.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • pretence — (US pretense) ► NOUN 1) an act or the action of pretending. 2) affected and ostentatious behaviour. 3) (pretence to) a claim, especially a false or ambitious one …   English terms dictionary

  • Pretence — Pre*tence , n., Pretenceful Pre*tence ful, a., Pretenceless Pre*tence *less, a. See {Pretense}, {Pretenseful}, {Pretenseless}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • pretence — The usual AmE spelling is pretense …   Modern English usage

  • pretence — [prē tens′, pritens′; prē′tens΄] n. Brit. sp. of PRETENSE …   English World dictionary

  • pretence — n. see also pretense simulation false show 1) to make a pretence (he made no pretence of being objective) 2) to see through smb. s pretence 3) under a pretence (under the pretence of patriotism; under false pretences) 4) without pretence (a… …   Combinatory dictionary

  • pretence — (BrE) (AmE pretense) noun ADJECTIVE ▪ elaborate ▪ It was all an elaborate pretence. ▪ flimsy, slight ▪ There is not even the slightest pretence of trying to make it realistic …   Collocations dictionary

  • pretence — pre|tence BrE pretense AmE [prıˈtens US ˈpri:tens] n [singular,U] 1.) a way of behaving which is intended to make people believe something that is not true pretence that ▪ the pretence that the old system could be made to work pretence of/at… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • pretence — UK [prɪˈtens] / US [ˈprɪˌtens] / US [prɪˈtens] noun [countable/uncountable] Word forms pretence : singular pretence plural pretences a way of behaving that does not honestly express your real feelings, thoughts, or intentions She said she was… …   English dictionary

  • pretence — [[t]prɪte̱ns, AM pri͟ːtens[/t]] pretences (in AM, use pretense) 1) N VAR A pretence is an action or way of behaving that is intended to make people believe something that is not true. Welland made a pretence of writing a note in his pad... We… …   English dictionary

  • pretence — noun 1. /prəˈtɛns / (say pruh tens) pretending or feigning; make believe: my sleepiness was all pretence. 2. /prəˈtɛns / (say pruh tens) a false show of something: a pretence of friendship. 3. /prəˈtɛns / (say pruh tens) a piece of make believe.… …  

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