Definition of "pretext" []

  • An ostensible or professed purpose; an excuse. (noun)
  • An effort or strategy intended to conceal something. (noun)
  • To allege as an excuse. (verb-transitive)
  • A fictitious reason given in order to conceal the real one (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

  • A specious excuse; pretence (noun) (c) HarperCollins Publishers Ltd 2016

Use "pretext" in a sentence
  • "Valiavichareska said students never planned to disrupt finals, which she called a pretext for ousting the students."
  • "So the Inauguration, cause or pretext is as good a reason as any other to stop."
  • "They looked for that pretext from the first moment that they had the first excuse to."