pull the wool over (one's) eyes

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pull the wool over (one's) eyes

To deceive, fool, or misdirect one, especially to gain an advantage. (Likely an allusion to the once-common practice of men of wearing large powdered wigs that resembled lambs' wool.) He tried pulling the wool over our eyes by hiding the profits in separate accounts, but we were quick to catch onto his scheme. Be prepared for your kids to try to pull the wool over your eyes when they're teenagers.
See also: eye, over, pull, wool
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

pull the wool over someone's eyes

Fig. to deceive someone. You can't pull the wool over my eyes. I know what's going on. Don't try to pull the wool over her eyes. She's too smart.
See also: eye, over, pull, wool
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

pull the wool over someone's eyes

Deceive or hoodwink someone, as in His partner had pulled the wool over his eyes for years by keeping the best accounts for himself . This term alludes to the former custom of wearing a wig, which when slipping down can blind someone temporarily. [c. 1800]
See also: eye, over, pull, wool
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

pull the wool over someone's eyes

If someone pulls the wool over your eyes, they try to deceive you, sometimes in order to get an advantage over you. I just thought he was trying to pull the wool over my eyes to get a better price. Parents who were mistreating their small children would find it difficult to pull the wool over her eyes. Note: In the past, wigs for men were sometimes called `wool' because they looked like a sheep's fleece. It was easy to pull wigs over people's eyes, either as a joke or in order to rob them.
See also: eye, over, pull, wool
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

pull the wool over someone's eyes

deceive someone, especially by telling untruths.
1997 Spectator On no occasion do I remember Ridsdale trying to pull the wool over my eyes but rather trying always to remove the wool that journalists…pull over their own eyes.
See also: eye, over, pull, wool
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

pull the ˈwool over somebody’s eyes

(informal) deceive somebody; hide the truth from somebody: It’s no use you trying to pull the wool over my eyes; you didn’t go to school again today, didn’t you? OPPOSITE: open your/somebody’s eyes (to something)This idiom may refer to a time in the past when judges and other important people wore wigs made of wool. If somebody pulled the wig over their eyes, they were not be able to see what was happening.
See also: eye, over, pull, wool
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

pull the wool over (someone's) eyes

To deceive; hoodwink.
See also: eye, over, pull, wool
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

pull the wool over someone's eyes, to

To hoodwink or deceive someone. This term comes from—and long survives—the custom of wearing a wig (except in the British legal system, where judges and barristers still do so). One writer suggests that it alludes to the slippage of the wig of a judge, who is temporarily blinded by a clever lawyer. In any event, it was used figuratively in a quite general way from the early nineteenth century on, on both sides of the Atlantic. “He ain’t so big a fool as to have the wool drawn over his eyes in that way,” wrote Frances M. Whitcher (The Widow Bedott Papers, 1856).
See also: over, pull, to, wool
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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