dis·​guise | \ də-ˈskīz , dis-ˈgīz also diz-\
disguised; disguising

Definition of disguise

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to change the customary dress (see dress entry 2 sense 1) or appearance of disguised herself in a wig and glasses
b : to furnish with a false appearance or an assumed (see assume sense 3) identity disguised as a beggar
2 obsolete : disfigure
3 : to obscure the existence or true state or character of : conceal unable to disguise his true feelings



Definition of disguise (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : apparel assumed to conceal one's identity or counterfeit another's The bank robber was wearing a disguise.
2 : the act of disguising
3a : form misrepresenting the true nature of something blessings in disguise
b : an artificial manner : pretense threw off all disguise

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Other Words from disguise


disguisedly \ -​ˈgīz(-​ə)d-​lē , -​ˈkīz(-​ə)d-​ \ adverb
disguisement \ -​ˈgīz-​mənt , -​ˈkīz-​ \ noun
disguiser noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for disguise

Synonyms: Verb

camouflage, cloak, dress up, mask

Synonyms: Noun

camouflage, costume, guise

Antonyms: Verb


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Choose the Right Synonym for disguise


disguise, cloak, mask mean to alter the dress or appearance of so as to conceal the identity or true nature. disguise implies a change in appearance or behavior that misleads by presenting a different apparent identity. disguised herself as a peasant cloak suggests a means of hiding a movement or an intention. cloaked their maneuvers in secrecy mask suggests some often obvious means of hiding or disguising something. smiling to mask his discontent

Examples of disguise in a Sentence


He tried to disguise his voice on the phone but I could tell it was him. She disguised herself in a wig and glasses. We disguised the fact that we were disappointed.


He wore a disguise of glasses, a fake mustache, and a cap. The famous thief is known to be a master of disguise.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Killing Eve also brought us fabulous European locations, somewhat less fabulous Russian locations, a plethora of clothes, accessories, and assassin gadgets (poison disguised in a hairpin!), and some killer dialogue—pun totally intended. Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "'Killing Eve' Season Two Finally Has a Release Date. Here's Everything We Know.," 5 Jan. 2019 Here’s how the money trail was disguised in one example the Journal traced to ShapeShift. Shane Shifflett, WSJ, "How Dirty Money Disappears Into the Black Hole of Cryptocurrency," 28 Sep. 2018 The people who participate the most in politics, usually people with more education and more resources, rely on plenty of social benefits from government, but these benefits are often hidden in the tax code or are disguised in other ways. Sean Illing, Vox, "Why so many people who need the government hate it," 17 Aug. 2018 Lot 178 is an IMBIR 16mm silent movie camera disguised in a ladies shoulder bag. Jason Tesauro, chicagotribune.com, "Channel your inner James Bond at this auction of Soviet spy cameras," 25 June 2018 Secrets of the Empire immerses players in a Rebel intelligence mission on Mustafar, disguised in Stormtrooper outfits and taking orders from snarky Rogue One droid K-2SO. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, "Happy Star Wars Day! Here are 6 ways to celebrate #MayThe4th and get ready for 'Solo'," 3 May 2018 The other function was to disguise weaknesses in a collection — say, late-Roman art, poorly represented at the Getty. Christopher Knight, latimes.com, "Something's missing from the newly reinstalled antiquities collection at the Getty Villa," 19 Apr. 2018 Fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid, continues its lethal toll disguised in some cases as legitimate prescription drugs, officials warn. Nicholas Rondinone, courant.com, "Essex Man Caught With Prescriptions Guilty In Dark Web Drug Probe," 10 Jan. 2018 Need to disguise vegetables in order for your little ones to eat them? Redbook, "Delicious Veggie Dishes for Eat Your Vegetables Day!," 16 June 2011

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Sweidan said Cohen left the store as soon as his disguise was ruined. Kathleen Joyce, Fox News, "Sacha Baron Cohen's controversies: From 'Borat' lawsuits to box office flops," 7 Aug. 2018 Each mission is full of myriad routes to your objective, planned or not, involving silly disguises and gadgets and truly surprising amounts of rat poison. Julie Muncy, Ars Technica, "Hitman 2 review: Accessible stealth oozing with style," 16 Nov. 2018 The customer took off Veselenik's disguise and immediately recognized him, records say. Cory Shaffer, cleveland.com, "Siblings accused of attempted murder in foiled plot to kill Olmsted Township bartender," 9 June 2017 Count Olaf’s disguises are also even better in season two, and include a gym coach wearing a tracksuit and turban (major Professor Quirrell of Harry Potter vibes) and a Karl Lagerfeld–type foreign auctioneer called Günther. Michaela Bechler, Vogue, "A Series of Unfortunate Events," 29 Mar. 2018 Amber, in the classic disguise of a beret and sunglasses, has to weather the paparazzi, and the antics of a kooky (and possibly insensitively) conceived wedding planner. Vogue, "A Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding," 15 Nov. 2018 This recipe for purslane pesto is the perfect disguise to win over anyone wary of weed-eating. Ashleigh Spitza, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Purslane may be growing in your lawn; for better health, put it in your diet," 10 July 2018 The key is the element of surprise, hence the disguises. CBS News, "An epic game of tag," 10 June 2018 Master of disguise Leonardo DiCaprio and a brunette. Madeleine Aggeler, The Cut, "9 More Unexpected Celebrity Couples We’d Like to See," 31 May 2018

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for disguise

Verb and Noun

Middle English disgisen, from Anglo-French desguiser, deguiser, from des- dis- + guise guise

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Statistics for disguise

Last Updated

18 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for disguise

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

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More Definitions for disguise



English Language Learners Definition of disguise

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to change the usual appearance, sound, taste, etc., of (someone or something) so that people will not recognize that person or thing
: to hide (something) so that it will not be seen or noticed



English Language Learners Definition of disguise (Entry 2 of 2)

: clothes or other things that you wear so that people will not recognize you
: the act of changing your appearance so that people will not recognize you


dis·​guise | \ də-ˈskīz , dis-ˈgīz\
disguised; disguising

Kids Definition of disguise

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to change the looks or sound of to avoid being recognized He disguised his voice on the phone.
2 : to keep from revealing She disguised her true feelings.



Kids Definition of disguise (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : clothing worn to avoid being recognized
2 : an outward appearance that hides what something really is a blessing in disguise

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More from Merriam-Webster on disguise

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for disguise

Spanish Central: Translation of disguise

Nglish: Translation of disguise for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of disguise for Arabic Speakers

Comments on disguise

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