con·​ceal | \ kən-ˈsēl How to pronounce conceal (audio) \
concealed; concealing; conceals

Definition of conceal

transitive verb

1 : to prevent disclosure or recognition of conceal the truth She could barely conceal her anger.
2 : to place out of sight concealed himself behind the door The defendant is accused of attempting to conceal evidence.

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Other Words from conceal

concealable \ kən-​ˈsē-​lə-​bəl How to pronounce conceal (audio) \ adjective
concealingly \ kən-​ˈsē-​liŋ-​lē How to pronounce conceal (audio) \ adverb
concealment \ kən-​ˈsēl-​mənt How to pronounce conceal (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for conceal



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hide, conceal, screen, secrete, bury mean to withhold or withdraw from sight. hide may or may not suggest intent. hide in the closet a house hidden in the woods conceal usually does imply intent and often specifically implies a refusal to divulge. concealed the weapon screen implies an interposing of something that prevents discovery. a house screened by trees secrete suggests a depositing in a place unknown to others. secreted the amulet inside his shirt bury implies covering up so as to hide completely. buried the treasure

Examples of conceal in a Sentence

The sunglasses conceal her eyes. The controls are concealed behind a panel. The defendant is accused of attempting to conceal evidence. The editorial accused the government of concealing the truth. She could barely conceal her anger.
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Recent Examples on the Web But the show’s discomfiting premises often conceal personal sources of inspiration. New York Times, "In ‘Chad,’ Nasim Pedrad Embraces Her Inner Teen Boy," 2 Apr. 2021 All his cooing can’t conceal his controlling nature. Bill Goodykoontz, The Arizona Republic, "In 'Made for Love,' Cristin Milioti's rage takes a familiar shape: a defiant middle finger," 28 Mar. 2021 When Jonelle Matthews first disappeared, investigators had only one piece of physical evidence — those footprints in the snow outside the Matthews home that somebody, possibly her abductor, had tried to conceal by using a garden rake. Richard Schlesinger, CBS News, "Former political candidate inserts himself into the case of a missing girl and ends up a murder suspect," 27 Mar. 2021 The hypersexual depictions of Asian women conceal the exploitation that shapes the many forms of Asian women’s labor in the United States and abroad. Genevieve Clutario, Harper's BAZAAR, "It's Time to Reckon with the History of Asian Women in America," 23 Mar. 2021 According to officials, Webb fired shots inside and outside the complex during the incident – most of which was caught on surveillance video – then tried to conceal his identity and hide two weapons that were found at the scene. Editors, USA TODAY, "House to vote on stimulus checks, negative COVID-19 tests required for UK: 5 things to know Monday," 28 Dec. 2020 Republicans have seldom even tried to conceal the cynicism of their deficit concerns. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, "Column: Republicans are complaining (again) about the budget deficit," 4 Dec. 2020 There are some indications that Barrett and People of Praise have tried to conceal her affiliation with the group. Sarah Midkiff,, "Did U.S. Supreme Court Frontrunner Amy Coney Barrett’s Religious Group Inspire The Handmaid’s Tale?," 23 Sep. 2020 No on Prop 25 spokesman Mike Gatto, a former Democratic assemblyman, said the campaign has not tried to conceal the sources of its funding. Bob Egelko,, "California bail industry makes itself invisible opposing Prop. 25, ending cash bail," 22 Sep. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'conceal.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of conceal

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for conceal

Middle English concelen, borrowed from Anglo-French conceler, borrowed from Latin concēlāre, from con- con- + cēlāre "to hide, keep secret," probably derivative of an unattested lengthened-grade noun formed from the Indo-European verb base *ḱel- "cover, conceal," whence Latin occulere "to hide from view, keep secret" (from *ob-cel-), Old Irish ceilid "(s/he) hides," Welsh celaf "(I) hide," Germanic *hel-a- "hide" (whence Old English, Old Saxon & Old High German helan "to hide, keep secret")

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Time Traveler for conceal

Time Traveler

The first known use of conceal was in the 14th century

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Statistics for conceal

Last Updated

9 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Conceal.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for conceal



English Language Learners Definition of conceal

: to hide (something or someone) from sight
: to keep (something) secret


con·​ceal | \ kən-ˈsēl How to pronounce conceal (audio) \
concealed; concealing

Kids Definition of conceal

1 : to hide from sight The safe was concealed behind a large painting.
2 : to keep secret He managed to conceal his true identity.


transitive verb

Legal Definition of conceal

1 : to prevent disclosure of or fail to disclose (as a provision in a contract) especially in violation of a duty to disclose
2a : to place out of sight

Note: A weapon need only be placed out of ordinary observation in order to be considered a concealed weapon.

b : to prevent or hinder recognition, discovery, or recovery of concealing stolen property

Other Words from conceal

concealment noun

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