- a party, dance, or other festive gathering of persons wearing masks and other disguises, and often elegant, historical, or fantastic costumes.
- a costume or disguise worn at such a gathering.
- false outward show; façade; pretense: a hypocrite's masquerade of virtue.
- activity, existence, etc., under false pretenses: a rich man's masquerade as a beggar.
- to go about under false pretenses or a false character; assume the character of; give oneself out to be: to masquerade as a former Russian count.
- to disguise oneself.
- to take part in a masquerade.
Origin of masquerade
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for masquerade
It builds to a masquerade ball, in which Not Harry and the women don masks and commence flirting.You Really Don't Want to Watch Fox’s ‘I Wanna Marry “Harry”’
May 20, 2014
They masquerade as intellectual contests, but are really just showcases for rhetorical cleverness and public charisma.My Debate With an ‘Intelligent Design’ Theorist
Karl W. Giberson
April 21, 2014
He was supposed to come back to “masquerade the relationship,” but no such luck.Vegan Strippers Let It All Hang Out
Kelly Williams Brown
March 29, 2014
He escorts her to masquerade parties, takes her sailing on his yacht, force-feeds her oysters.Speed Read: 12 Naughty Bits From ‘50 Shades Darker’
May 4, 2012
And it says something depressing about our country that it is permitted to masquerade as the former.The Freedom to Be Fat? The Politics of Movie Popcorn, Obama, and the FDA
April 8, 2012
And it was my fate to hear all this last night at the masquerade.Tales And Novels, Volume 3 (of 10)
Tell me the meaning of this masquerade; and why you have attempted so desperate an adventure?The Last of the Mohicans
James Fenimore Cooper
Whatever the motive for his masquerade, it was not to attract anything feminine.It Happened in Egypt
C. N. Williamson
Are you dressed for a masquerade, and is this a time to go masked?
And then too, Madame, we must try to help Cléonte's plan by supporting his masquerade.
- a party or other gathering to which the guests wear masks and costumes
- the disguise worn at such a function
- a pretence or disguise
- to participate in a masquerade; disguise oneself
- to dissemble
Word Origin and History for masquerade
1590s, "assembly of people wearing masks and disguises," from French mascarade or Spanish mascarada "masked party or dance," from Italian mascarata "a ball at which masks are worn," variant of mascherata "masquerade," from maschera (see mask (n.)). Figurative sense of "false outward show" is from 1670s.
1650s, from masquerade (n.). Related: Masqueraded; masquerading.