under cover

(redirected from under the cover of)

under cover

With one's true identity being kept a secret. Hyphenated if used as a modifier before a noun. Under cover of darkness, the thieves entered the orchard and stole as much fruit as they could carry. Tabloids often publish false or misleading stories they say are based on testimony of sources who are "under cover of anonymity," which is really just code for "completely fictitious."
See also: cover

under cover

1. Protected by a shelter, as in It began to pour but fortunately we were under cover. [c. 1400]
2. under cover of. Also, under the cover of. Hidden or protected by, as in They sneaked out under cover of darkness, or, as it was put in a sermon in 1751: "Presumption which loves to conceal itself under the cover of humility" (John Jortin, Sermons on Different Subjects).
See also: cover

under ˈcover


1 pretending to be somebody else in order to do something secretly: a police officer working under cover
2 under a structure that gives protection from the weather: We’d better get under cover or we’ll get very wet in this rain.
See also: cover

under cover

1. In an enclosure for mailing.
2. Being hidden or protected, as by darkness.
See also: cover
References in classic literature ?
Favoured by this circumstance, he succeeded in reaching the bushes in sufficient time and Paul Hover had just hurried the breathless Ellen into the tangled bush, as Ishmael gained the summit of the rock, in the manner already described, where he stood like a man momentarily bereft of sense, gazing at the confusion which had been created among his chattels, or at his gagged and bound children, who had been safely bestowed, by the forethought of the bee-hunter, under the cover of a bark roof, in a sort of irregular pile.