de·​ceit·​ful | \ di-ˈsēt-fəl How to pronounce deceitful (audio) \

Definition of deceitful

: having a tendency or disposition to deceive or give false impressions:
a : not honest a deceitful child left her deceitful husband
b : deceptive, misleading deceitful advertising

Other Words from deceitful

deceitfully \ di-​ˈsēt-​fə-​lē How to pronounce deceitful (audio) \ adverb
deceitfulness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for deceitful

dishonest, deceitful, mendacious, untruthful mean unworthy of trust or belief. dishonest implies a willful perversion of truth in order to deceive, cheat, or defraud. a swindle usually involves two dishonest people deceitful usually implies an intent to mislead and commonly suggests a false appearance or double-dealing. the secret affairs of a deceitful spouse mendacious may suggest bland or even harmlessly mischievous deceit and when used of people often suggests a habit of telling untruths. mendacious tales of adventure untruthful stresses a discrepancy between what is said and fact or reality. an untruthful account of their actions

Examples of deceitful in a Sentence

charged the store owner with such deceitful practices as inflating the list prices for items only so he could put them on sale at drastically reduced prices the deceitful salesman neglected to mention some important information about the used car
Recent Examples on the Web No one can respect him for being deceitful about it. Sally Jenkins, Anchorage Daily News, 4 Nov. 2021 Less than a month after announcing her split from fiancé Steve Lodge, the former Real Housewives of Orange County star has accused him of using her in order to gain attention and being deceitful about his dating life — claims Lodge adamantly denies. Dory Jackson,, 15 Oct. 2021 While its gruesome violence is wildly exaggerated, Squid Game manages to reflect the feeling of the present moment, in the same way the decrepit, deceitful rulers of Game of Thrones reflected audience’s apathy and anger toward the political process. Dani Di Placido, Forbes, 6 Oct. 2021 John Hoogenakker and Peter Sarsgaard portray federal prosecutors who set out to expose Purdue Pharma’s deceitful marketing of OxyContin. Antonio Ferme, Variety, 5 Oct. 2021 To date, Linn has turned down only one request that felt deceitful., 19 Sep. 2021 While some shameless politicians and deceitful media personalities have tried to turn COVID measures into a nonsensical referendum on freedom, the NFL has taken the lead in modeling responsible behavior. Nancy Armour, USA TODAY, 11 Sep. 2021 Jenkins attempted to cooperate with the federal government but was deemed manipulative and deceitful. Washington Post, 30 June 2021 There is also special care taken with the portrayal of Stefani, who is a deceitful and treacherous lying white woman. Jasmin Hernandez, Harper's BAZAAR, 30 June 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'deceitful.' 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 deceitful

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for deceitful

see deceit

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The first known use of deceitful was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

11 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Deceitful.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Nov. 2021.

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More Definitions for deceitful



English Language Learners Definition of deceitful

: not honest : making or trying to make someone believe something that is not true


de·​ceit·​ful | \ di-ˈsēt-fəl How to pronounce deceitful (audio) \

Kids Definition of deceitful

: not honest : full of deceit deceitful advertising

More from Merriam-Webster on deceitful

Nglish: Translation of deceitful for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of deceitful for Arabic Speakers


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