Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1300-1400
Language: Latin
Origin: praetendere 'to stretch out in front, make an excuse', from tendere 'to stretch'

pretend

1 verb
     
preā€§tend1 S2 W3
1 [intransitive and transitive] to behave as if something is true when in fact you know it is not, in order to deceive people or for fun
pretend (that)
We can't go on pretending that everything is OK.
Let's pretend we're on the moon.
pretend to do something
She pretended not to notice.
He's not asleep - he's just pretending.
To pretend ignorance of the situation would be irresponsible.
I can't marry her and to pretend otherwise would be wrong.
2 [transitive usually in negatives] to claim that something is true, when it is not
pretend (that)
I can't pretend I understand these technical terms. (=I admit I do not understand them)
pretend to do/be something
The book doesn't pretend to be for beginners.

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