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pretext (noun) false reason
A pretext is a false reason you give for doing something, usually something bad. When you want to hide the real for doing something, usually something bad, the false reason that you give for it is a pretext. He wanted to see her, and offering her help to find a job offered him a pretext.’ This means he saw her for the false reason of helping her find a job, but his real intention was to see her.
- His real intention was to meet her, and the work he had with her father provided a pretext to call at their place. In fact he could meet her father at office without going to their home.
- His thirst was only a pretext to make her give him water, and in the process touch her lovely hands.