- deceitfulness in speech or conduct, as by speaking or acting in two different ways to different people concerning the same matter; double-dealing.
- an act or instance of such deceitfulness.
- Law. the act or fact of including two or more offenses in one count, or charge, as part of an indictment, thus violating the requirement that each count contain only a single offense.
- the state or quality of having two elements or parts; being twofold or double.
Origin of duplicity
—“The Duplicity of Hargraves”: A short story by O. Henry, first published in 1902.
— Duplicity: A 2009 spy flick starring Julia Roberts and Clive Owen.
- "Here duplicity passes for wit, and frankness is looked upon as folly."-Madame Elizabeth-Charlotte of Bavaria, Duchess d’Orléans Memoirs of the Court of Louis XIV and of the Regency (1899)
- "[W]hen he saw that he had been tricked, he lost patience at the duplicity of the Florentines, and broke the peace with them."-Werner L. Gundersheimer The Italian Renaissance (1965)
- "[I]n doing so he would have left the count open to the objection of duplicity, or double pleading, in setting up two distinct and separate transactions."-trial transcription publ. by J. S. Voorhies Trail of Charles B. Huntington for Forgery: Principal Defense: Insanity (1857)
Related Wordsfalsehood, chicanery, hypocrisy, artifice, deceit, dishonesty, double-dealing, dualism, fraud, guile, treachery, perfidy, perfidiousness, one-upmanship, skullduggery, cunning, duality, dissimulation, dissemblance
Examples from the Web for duplicity
But for a man who delighted in exposing hypocrisies, his relationship to Communism was riddled with duplicity.Brecht's Mercenary Mother Courage Turns 75
September 10, 2014
It even escalates the discomfort and duplicity by magnitudes.The Real Story and Lesson of the Abscam Sting in ‘American Hustle’
December 17, 2013
Palestinians and their sympathizers can point out the unscrupulous dishonesty and duplicity of the Israeli occupiers.Acclaimed Israeli Film 'Bethlehem' Brings the Occupation Back Into Our Homes
October 3, 2013
Duplicity likewise covered Pakistan's Afghan policy from the start.David's Book Club: Pakistan, Between Mosque and Military
April 23, 2012
Decades of mistrust and duplicity on both sides are coming to the surface.America's Pakistan Mess Gets Worse With Alleged NATO Strike
November 27, 2011
This perpetual atmosphere of duplicity was positively distasteful.Thoroughbreds
W. A. Fraser
He was irritated, too, by a suspicion of duplicity in the members of the force.The Secret Agent
Here was a man after his own heart, which loved intrigue and duplicity.The Monster Men
Edgar Rice Burroughs
But Cunningham's duplicity had more and closer folds than his own.Tales And Novels, Volume 8 (of 10)
But the concealment, the lying and duplicity, these cannot be pardoned until they have been confessed.The Eternal City
- deception; double-dealing
Word Origin and History for duplicity
early 15c., from Old French duplicite (13c.), from Late Latin duplicitatem (nominative duplicitas) "doubleness," in Medieval Latin "ambiguity," noun of quality from duplex (genitive duplicis) "twofold." The notion is of being "double" in one's conduct (cf. Greek diploos "treacherous, double-minded," literally "twofold, double").