from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To modify the manner or appearance of in order to prevent recognition.
  • transitive v. To furnish with a disguise.
  • transitive v. To conceal or obscure by dissemblance or false show; misrepresent: disguise one's true intentions.
  • n. The act or an instance of disguising.
  • n. The condition of being disguised.
  • n. Clothes or accessories worn to conceal one's true identity.
  • n. Appearance that misrepresents the true character of something: a blessing in disguise.
  • n. A pretense or misrepresentation: His repeated references to his dangerous hobbies were only a disguise to cover up his insecurity.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An attire (e.g. clothing) used to hide one's identity or assume another.
  • n. The appearance of something on the outside which masks what's beneath.
  • n. The act of disguising, notably as a ploy
  • v. To change the appearance of (a person or thing) so as to hide, or to assume an identity.
  • v. To prevent giving away or revealing (something secret).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A dress or exterior put on for purposes of concealment or of deception.
  • n. Artificial language or manner assumed for deception; false appearance; counterfeit semblance or show.
  • n. Change of manner by drink; intoxication.
  • n. A masque or masquerade.
  • transitive v. To change the guise or appearance of; especially, to conceal by an unusual dress, or one intended to mislead or deceive.
  • transitive v. To hide by a counterfeit appearance; to cloak by a false show; to mask
  • transitive v. To affect or change by liquor; to intoxicate.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To conceal the personal identity of, by changes of guise or usual appearance, such as those produced by differences in dress or in the hair or beard, the use of a mask, etc.
  • To conceal or cover up the real or original character of by a counterfeit form or appearance; cloak by false show, deceptive statement or speech, or an artificial manner: as, to disguise the handwriting; to disguise the taste of a drug; to disguise sentiments or intentions.
  • To alter the appearance of; make difficult of recognition by some change not intended for concealment.
  • To change in voice or behavior by the use of strong drink; intoxicate.
  • To distinguish by a difference of form or guise.
  • Synonyms Simulate, etc. (see dissemble), mask, veil.
  • n. That which disguises; something that serves or is intended for concealment of identity, character, or quality; a deceptive covering, condition, manner, etc.
  • n. The act of disguising, or the state of being disguised; a false or misleading appearance; concealment under a disguised form, manner, etc.: as, his attempted disguise was unsuccessful; a thief in disguise.
  • n. Change of behavior and utterance by drink; intoxication.
  • n. A masque; an interlude.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the act of concealing the identity of something by modifying its appearance
  • n. any attire that modifies the appearance in order to conceal the wearer's identity
  • v. make unrecognizable
  • n. an outward semblance that misrepresents the true nature of something


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Middle English disguisen, from Old French desguiser : des-, dis- + guise, manner; see guise.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle English disgisen, disguisen, borrowed from Old French desguiser (modern déguiser), itself derived from des- "dis-" (from Latin dis-) + guise "guise" (from a Germanic source).



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  • Holmes did this a lot when he was working on cases, and so did Artie.

    September 12, 2012

  • See also "guiser".

    November 5, 2007