white lie

noun

Definition of white lie

: a lie about a small or unimportant matter that someone tells to avoid hurting another person He told a (little) white lie as his excuse for missing the party.

Learn More about white lie

Statistics for white lie

Cite this Entry

“White lie.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/white%20lie. Accessed 6 Jul. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on white lie

Spanish Central: Translation of white lie

Comments on white lie

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

WORD OF THE DAY

See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A More Exception(al) Quiz

  • hot dog  hot dog  hot dog  hot dog cat
  • Which of the following words is not a synonym for ‘a young person’?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!