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A modification of dissimule after resemble and semblance.


  • IPA(key): /dɪˈsɛmbəl/, [dɪˈsɛmbɫ̩]
  • (file)


dissemble (third-person singular simple present dissembles, present participle dissembling, simple past and past participle dissembled)

  1. (transitive) To disguise or conceal something.
  2. (transitive) To feign.
  3. (transitive) To deliberately ignore something; to pretend not to notice.
    Synonyms: disregard, take no notice of; see also Thesaurus:ignore
  4. (intransitive) To falsely hide one's opinions or feelings.
    • 1700, [John] Dryden, “Cymon and Iphigenia, from Boccace”, in Fables Ancient and Modern; [], London: [] Jacob Tonson, [], →OCLC, page 552:
      VVhile to his Arms the bluſhing Bride he took; / To ſeeming Sadneſs ſhe compoſ'd her Look; / As if by Force ſubjected to his VVill, / Tho' pleaſ'd, diſſembling, and a VVoman ſtill.
    • 1718, Mat[thew] Prior, “Solomon on the Vanity of the World. A Poem in Three Books.”, in Poems on Several Occasions, London: [] Jacob Tonson [], and John Barber [], →OCLC, book II (Pleasure), page 457:
      [] She transferr'd the curs'd Advice, / That Monarchs ſhould their inward Soul diſguise, / Diſſemble, and command; be falſe, and wiſe; / By ignominous Arts for ſervile Ends / Should compliment their Foes, and ſhun their Friends.

Usage notes[edit]

Not to be confused with disassemble (take apart).

Derived terms[edit]