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Word of the Day - for Toastmasters everywhere
Tuesday 19th February 2019
Archive | Previous word | Today's word |

dissemble (verb) diss-EM-bul

Hide one's true feelings, beliefs, intentions or real character; pretend; assume a false appearance, act hypocritically.

How easily he could dissemble, Merrill thought wearily as she drew up the chair and prepared to take his dictation.

Kate Kingston, A Warning of Magic. Amazon

She was obsessed with educating herself against all odds, writing as a teenager, ''I have a heart that scorns disguise, and a countenance which will not dissemble.''

Toni Bentley, The New York Times, 29 May 2005, New York Times
reviewing Lyndall Gordon's Vindication: A Life of Mary Wollstonecraft. Amazon

And the best explanation of why he lies and continues to dissemble is also provided in this book: he seems most alive in the book when he's walking the ethical tightrope and hoodwinking somebody.

Jack Shafer, The New York Times, 14 March 2004, New York Times
reviewing Jayson Blair's Burning Down My Masters House: My Life at the New York Times. Amazon

The close observation of their enemies - mother, father, authority figures - teaches these unhappy children how to dissemble or keep silent... and see everything.

Doris Lessing, in her foreword to Stendhal's Memoirs of an Egotist. Amazon

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