Definition of belie
1a : to give a false impression of Her gentleness belies her strength.b : to present an appearance not in agreement with His manner and appearance belie his age.
2a : to show (something) to be false or wrong The evidence belies their claims of innocence.b : to run counter to : contradict … appeared to belie all the rosy things I had heard about it. — Katherine T. Kinkead
3 : disguise 3 An air of rural charm … belies the community's industrial activity. — American Guide Series: Pennsylvania
belierplay \-ˈlī(-ə)r\ noun
belie was our Word of the Day on 12/26/2015. Hear the podcast!
Examples of belie in a sentence
a tree whose delicate beauty belies its real toughness
Their actions belie their claim to be innocent.
Did You Know?
What is a lie? asked Lord Byron in Don Juan. He then answered himself: "'Tis but the truth in masquerade. . . ." The history of "belie" illustrates a certain connection between lying and disguising. In its earliest known use, around A.D. 1000, belie meant "to deceive by lying." By the 1200s, it was being used to mean "to tell lies about," using a sense similar to that of the modern word slander. Over time its meaning softened, shifting from an act of outright lying to one of mere misrepresentation, and by the early 1700s, the word was being used in the sense "to disguise or conceal." Nowadays, "belie" suggests giving an impression at variance with the facts rather than telling an intentional untruth.
BELIE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of belie for English Language Learners
: to give a false idea of (something)
: to show (something) to be false or wrong
BELIE Defined for Kids
Definition of belie for Students
1 : to give a false idea of Her voice was strong and even, belying her eighty-two years. — Kevin Henkes, Olive's Ocean
2 : to show to be false Their actions belie their claim of innocence.
Seen and Heard
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