white lie

Definitions

  • WHITE LIES
    WHITE LIES
  • WordNet 3.6
    • n white lie an unimportant lie (especially one told to be tactful or polite)
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • White lie a euphemism for such lies as one finds it convenient to tell, and excuses himself for telling.
    • White lie See under Lie.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • White lie a conventional phrase not strictly true: a well-meant falsehood
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Quotations

  • Rudyard Kipling
    Rudyard%20Kipling
    “And the end of the fight is a tombstone white with the name of the late deceased, and the epitaph drear: A Fool lies here who tried to hustle the East.”
  • Source Unknown
    Source Unknown
    “The future lies before you, like paths of pure white snow. Be careful how you tread it, for every step will show.”

Idioms

White lie - If you tell a white lie, you lie in order not to hurt someone's feelings.
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Etymology

Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
A.S. leógan (lyge, a falsehood), prov. Eng. lig; Dut. liegen, Goth. liugan, Ger. lügen, to lie.

Usage

In literature:

There is a white form lying in the hall near an open front door.
"David Lockwin--The People's Idol" by John McGovern
It was the White Genius that was lying asleep.
"Young Folks Treasury, Volume 2 (of 12)" by Various
Near us lie isles of flesh and blood, white cottages, tiled and meadowed.
"Darkwater" by W. E. B. Du Bois
And there they saw a low white cloud, lying on the sea as though it had just dropped solidly out of the sky.
"Pearl of Pearl Island" by John Oxenham
She thought that if I could keep out of the way for a few days, the white people would think that this girl was mistaken, or had lied.
"Narrative of the Life and Adventures of Henry Bibb, an American Slave, Written by Himself" by Henry Bibb
Mrs. Lancaster turned to see her lying white and cold in her chair.
"What Answer?" by Anna E. Dickinson
Perhaps standing before a mirror; with a dress all of white; and trying how orange-blossoms would best lie in her soft brown hair.
"Macleod of Dare" by William Black
Which is in the dish there is yellow and the white and all the sleep, all the variegation lying makes the best as in the grate.
"Matisse Picasso and Gertrude Stein" by Gertrude Stein
She saw him lying bandaged and white on his bed when the woman and her child were brought to see him.
"The Christmas Angel" by Abbie Farwell Brown
She was lying on it now, in a white morning dress.
"The Honorable Miss" by L. T. Meade
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In poetry:

Beside the arbutus,
The green-leaved Spring,
He lies like a lover
By his young bride,
In the white hour,
The white, first waking.
"Ode To Walt Whitman" by Stephen Vincent Benet
The little white town below lies deep
As eternity in slumber.
O, you who are mine, how a glance can reap
Beauties beyond all number!
"At Amalfi" by Cale Young Rice
The caves of the mountains shall receive me,
I shall lie as at a mother's breast
The white food the King of Heaven shall give me,
And the wine of Heaven for feast.
"The Refuge " by Katharine Tynan
'Here say you that Caesar's warriors lie? —
But my little white cat was my only friend!
Could she but live, might the record die
Of Caesar, his legions, his aims, his end!'
"The Roman Gravemounds" by Thomas Hardy
Habet! a leaden shower his breast has shattered;
Vainly he flutters, not again to rise;
His soft white plumes along the waves are scattered;
Helpless the wing that braved the tempest lies.
"My Aviary" by Oliver Wendell Holmes
Down went many a gallant soldier;
Down went many a stout dragoon;
Lying grim, and stark, and gory,
On the crimson field of glory,
Leaving us a noble story
And their white-cliffed home a boon.
"The Charge At Balaklava" by James Barron Hope

In news:

My Boyfriend Doesn't Want Me to Study Abroad, plus White Lies vs Brutal Honesty and I'm Falling In Love With a Coworker .
In Jonathan's last post on this, he wrote that White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer owed Charles Krauthammer an apology, after accusing him of lying about the Winston Churchill bust being removed from the Oval Office.
His world is so black and white that, as a high school freshman, he doesn't even know how to tell a lie.
White House hopes for engagement lie shattered.
5 Little White Lies that Sabotage Your Results.
Samantha Grace, 'Miss Lavigne's Little White Lie '.
Experts say parents shouldn't hang their heads in shame if their children catch them in a little white lie .
A little white lie truth.
Girl's Best Friend : Relationships Can't Be Built On Little White Lies.
A little white lie never hurt anyone, or did it.
' Breathtaking ' lies and dishonesty by Obama and White House spark anger at Benghazi hearing.
Girl's Best Friend: Relationships Can't Be Built On Little White Lies.
In Little White Lies, writer-director Guillaume Canet maintains audience interest for 154 minutes, with little drama and a plot that's more like a situation than a story.
It's been five years since Fastball 's last album, Keep Your Wig On, but the trio doesn't make a lot of major tweaks on their fifth album, Little White Lies.
Relationships Can't Be Built On Little White Lies.
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In science:

At comparatively weak magnetic fields, all of the low-n cyclotron harmonics lie in the IR and the ob ject is rejected from spectroscopic targeting by the QSO algorithm as the white dwarf + M star pair that it is.
New Low Accretion-Rate Magnetic Binary Systems and their Significance for the Evolution of Cataclysmic Variables
Nevertheless, if we were to assume that such an extrapolation is valid and that the maximum white dwarf mass is 1.3M⊙ then these results argue that the minimum mass of a core collapse supernova progenitor lies in the range ∼6.8-8.6M⊙ .
New Praesepe white dwarfs and the initial mass-final mass relation
Let us say that a point x ∈ R2 is black if it lies in a black cell, and white if it lies in a white cell.
Percolation on random Johnson-Mehl tessellations and related models
Many white dwarfs will be ignored by M E AD due to their colours lying outside the main stellar locus.
High Spatial Resolution Galactic 3D Extinction Mapping with IPHAS
Figure 1: Dynkin diagrams for the Lie superalgebra sl(2|2): A white circle expresses even root; a grey (a cross) circle expresses odd root α with (α|α) = 0.
Analytic Bethe ansatz and functional equations associated with any simple root systems of the Lie superalgebra sl(r+1|s+1)
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