on false pretenses

on false pretenses

On a false impression created through intentional misrepresentation. I'm afraid you were brought here on false pretenses. I'm not your long-lost brother. You may not have lied directly, but you sold him those paintings on false pretenses—he thinks they're originals!
See also: false, on, pretense

by/on/under false preˈtences

(British English) (American English by/on/under false ˈpretenses) by lying about your identity, qualifications, financial or social position, etc: She was sent to prison for six months for obtaining money under false pretences.He got me there under false pretences. He told me he wanted to discuss a business deal, but when I got there, it was a surprise birthday party.
See also: by, false, on, pretence
References in periodicals archive ?
Army, I should not complain that those making the decisions to conduct a pre-emptive war, based on false pretenses, have no family members involved.
In "Enemies," the pain of loss reads poignantly at the final moment in the faces of de la Pena, the cuckolded lover, and Felix Blaska, his doctor, who's been summoned on false pretenses away from mourning his baby's death.
I said that Bush was lying on his budget plans, that the California electricity shortage was market manipulation, that the tax cuts were targeted to those at the top, that the war in Iraq was sold on false pretenses.
Changing the constitution is something that ought not be done lightly, least of all on false pretenses.