deception

noun
de·​cep·​tion | \ di-ˈsep-shən How to pronounce deception (audio) \

Definition of deception

1a : the act of causing someone to accept as true or valid what is false or invalid : the act of deceiving resorting to falsehood and deception used deception to leak the classified information
b : the fact or condition of being deceived the deception of his audience
2 : something that deceives : trick fooled by a scam artist's clever deception

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Other Words from deception

deceptional \ -​shə-​nəl How to pronounce deceptional (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for deception

deception, fraud, double-dealing, subterfuge, trickery mean the acts or practices of one who deliberately deceives. deception may or may not imply blameworthiness, since it may suggest cheating or merely tactical resource. magicians are masters of deception fraud always implies guilt and often criminality in act or practice. indicted for fraud double-dealing suggests treachery or at least action contrary to a professed attitude. a go-between suspected of double-dealing subterfuge suggests the adoption of a stratagem or the telling of a lie in order to escape guilt or to gain an end. obtained the papers by subterfuge trickery implies ingenious acts intended to dupe or cheat. resorted to trickery to gain their ends

Examples of deception in a Sentence

She accuses the company of willful deception in its advertising. His many deceptions did not become known until years after he died.

Recent Examples on the Web

Yet the initial deception is enabled by the internet’s core features: anonymity and user-generated content. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Reid Hoffman’s Fake News," 11 Jan. 2019 As a result, old company documents revealing the deception were made public. Cheryl Wischhover, Vox, "Johnson & Johnson accused of hiding the asbestos in its baby powder for decades," 14 Dec. 2018 The simple deceptions of geography here are beguiling. Horatio Clare, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why You Should Go to Belize Now," 21 Dec. 2018 When Missi googled Derek Alldred, half a dozen mug shots of Richie—Derek—popped up, alongside news articles with alarming phrases such as career con man and long history of deception. Rachel Monroe, The Atlantic, "The Perfect Man Who Wasn't," 6 Mar. 2018 Enric Marco, now 97, photographed in 2005, shortly before his deception was exposed. Mario Vargas Llosa, WSJ, "‘The Impostor’ Review: The Man Who Wasn’t There," 23 Aug. 2018 Victoria considered the entire affair a great deception and, according to Beatrice, did not speak to her youngest daughter from May of 1884 when the engagement was announced, to November of that year. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "What Was Queen Victoria Like as a Mother?," 13 Jan. 2019 We’re surrounded by lies — exaggerations, self-deceptions, the background hum of advertisements. Verge Staff, The Verge, "The best memes of 2018, according to The Verge staff," 27 Dec. 2018 Indeed, more informed voters practice more partisan self-deception. Sean Illing, Vox, "Intellectuals have said democracy is failing for a century. They were wrong.," 20 Dec. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for deception

Middle English decepcioun, from Anglo-French deception, from Late Latin deception-, deceptio, from Latin decipere to deceive

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Last Updated

9 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for deception

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

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More Definitions for deception

deception

noun

English Language Learners Definition of deception

: the act of making someone believe something that is not true : the act of deceiving someone
: an act or statement intended to make people believe something that is not true

deception

noun
de·​cep·​tion | \ di-ˈsep-shən How to pronounce deception (audio) \

Kids Definition of deception

1 : the act of making someone believe something that is not true Magicians are masters of deception.
2 : trick entry 1 sense 1 His clever deception fooled me.

deception

noun
de·​cep·​tion | \ di-ˈsep-shən How to pronounce deception (audio) \

Legal Definition of deception

1 : an act of deceiving
2 : something that deceives : deceit

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