lie 2 (lī)
1. A false statement deliberately presented as being true; a falsehood.
2. Something meant to deceive or mistakenly accepted as true: learned his parents had been swindlers and felt his whole childhood had been a lie.
v. lied, ly·ing (līĭng), lies
1. To present false information with the intention of deceiving.
2. To convey a false image or impression: Appearances often lie.
To say or write as a lie.
lie through (one's) teeth
To lie outrageously or brazenly.
[Middle English, from Old English lyge; see leugh- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
Synonyms: lie2, equivocate, fib, prevaricate
These verbs mean to evade or depart from the truth: a witness who lied under oath; didn't equivocate about her real purpose; fibbed to escape being scolded; didn't prevaricate but answered honestly.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.