Simple Definition of pretext
: a reason that you give to hide your real reason for doing something
Full Definition of pretext
: a purpose or motive alleged or an appearance assumed in order to cloak the real intention or state of affairs
Examples of pretext
She went back to her friend's house on the pretext that she had forgotten her purse.
Origin of pretext
Latin praetextus, from praetexere to assign as a pretext, screen, extend in front, from prae- + texere to weave — more at technical
First Known Use: 1513
Synonym Discussion of pretext
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