dis·​guise | \ də-ˈskīz How to pronounce disguise (audio) , 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 \ də-​ˈskīz(-​ə)d-​lē How to pronounce disguisedly (audio) , dis-​ˈgīz(-​ə)d-​ also  diz-​ \ adverb
disguisement \ də-​ˈskīz-​mənt How to pronounce disguisement (audio) , dis-​ˈgīz-​ also  diz-​ \ 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

The handwritten notes showed that Montgomery planned to disguise himself as a woman and get into the couple’s house with a phony story about returning a cake dish. Jesse Leavenworth, courant.com, "Manchester 1996 murder of Gayle Isleib spotlighted on Investigation Discovery TV show," 13 June 2019 Troops are accused of killing innocent civilians and disguising them as guerrillas in exchange for extra pay. Fox News, "Colombia army general promoted amid human rights concerns," 6 June 2019 Troops are accused of killing innocent civilians and disguising them as guerrillas in exchange for extra pay. Washington Post, "Colombia army general promoted amid human rights concerns," 6 June 2019 In changing her name, training with the troops, and disguising herself as a male soldier, Mulan took actions that might be far from reality, but her story is eerily similar to that of a real Mexican heroine: Petra Herrera. Teen Vogue, "Mexican Revolutionary Petra Herrera Posed as a Man to Fight for Her Country," 1 Apr. 2019 During a German search of the castle, Szyja Perlmutter escaped arrest by disguising himself as a gardener. WSJ, "A Belgian Castle With a Heroic Past," 13 Feb. 2019 What amazes me the most about the progressive takeover of Colorado is how much of it is blatant corporatism disguised as virtue-signaling. Jon Caldara, The Denver Post, "Caldara: In Colorado you’re still paying for rich folks to buy a luxury second car," 7 June 2019 Australian airline Qantas has teamed up with Airbnb to hide first-class tickets on their site disguised as listings. Elizabeth Gulino, House Beautiful, "You Could Score First-Class Airline Tickets On Airbnb For Just $20," 24 May 2019 For those unfamiliar with the newer games, Mimikyu is a Pokémon that disguises itself as a Pikachu to make friends. Gabe Bergado, Teen Vogue, ""Pokémon Detective Pikachu" Star Justice Smith on the Power of Representation, Fans Dressing Up as Tim Goodman, and Sequel Ideas," 17 May 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Both singers serenaded Kourtney at the party, and Sia didn't even wear her usual disguise. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Everything to Know About Kourtney Kardashian's 40th Birthday Party," 19 Apr. 2019 Rice, who now gets more than half of his income from blue catfish, said the invaders have been a blessing in disguise. Christina Tkacik, baltimoresun.com, "As blue catfish multiply in Chesapeake Bay, watermen pursue new catch — and restaurants offer new delicacy," 7 June 2019 The decision to bring them back was actually a nod to a buzzy theory where fans thought Arya was actually the Waif in disguise. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Jaqen H'ghar and The Waif Filmed a Fake Game of Thrones Finale Scene," 28 May 2019 To ensure the chicks don’t take to people, keepers wear the disguises to hide the human shape and obscure the face. Washington Post, "Louisiana’s whooping crane comeback: 5 chicks this year," 13 July 2018 Insurance was part of the normalizing disguise that Bob and the Family Parr wore to hide the brilliant gifts that are at once their calling and their art (and sometimes their burden). Brad Bird, New York Times, "Review: ‘Incredibles 2’ Is a Fast Blast (With Red Flags)," 13 June 2018 In that movie, researchers in Antarctica are plagued by a parasitic being that's able to assimilate into/imitate other humans — is this a hint that some of the people in Hawkins are going to turn out to be Upside-Downers in disguise? Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, "'Stranger Things 3' Promises to Be Funny, Harrowing, and Full of '80s References," 24 May 2019 Proponents of either theory point towards a number of clues: that the Titanic didn't allow for a public examination before its voyage—out of fear that it would be found out by experts as Olympic in disguise, theorists claim. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "The Wild Conspiracy That the Titanic Never Sank," 27 Feb. 2019 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

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

24 Jun 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 How to pronounce disguise (audio) , 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

What made you want to look up disguise? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


showing courage and determination

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