9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[mas-kuh-reyd] /ˌmæs kəˈreɪd/
a party, dance, or other festive gathering of persons wearing masks and other disguises, and often elegant, historical, or fantastic costumes.
a costume or disguise worn at such a gathering.
false outward show; façade; pretense:
a hypocrite's masquerade of virtue.
activity, existence, etc., under false pretenses:
a rich man's masquerade as a beggar.
verb (used without object), masqueraded, masquerading.
to go about under false pretenses or a false character; assume the character of; give oneself out to be:
to masquerade as a former Russian count.
to disguise oneself.
to take part in a masquerade.
Origin of masquerade
1580-90; earlier masquerada, mascarado, pseudo-Spanish forms of Middle French mascarade < Upper Italian mascherada; see mask, -ade1
Related forms
masquerader, noun
1. mummery. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for masquerade
  • So it is easy to see how hypomania could masquerade as cheerful character.
  • Part of the masquerade is to downplay or deny or not even mention other factors.
  • Given the hyperbole and personal attacks that so often masquerade for debate today, it's worth noting the tenor of this debate.
  • For their masquerade is as refreshing as a gin fizz on a hot day.
  • While a masquerade party takes place on the first floor, our heroes wreak havoc in the bathroom on the second floor.
  • He might be mistaken for a provincial cavalier or a performer in a masquerade.
  • Some flash drives masquerade as bracelets and necklaces.
  • If it were legitimate science, there would be countless private dollars for funding this masquerade.
  • These are the mainstream occurrences that masquerade as online teaching across the nation.
  • To take full advantage of these amenities, many tourists masquerade as students.
British Dictionary definitions for masquerade


a party or other gathering to which the guests wear masks and costumes
the disguise worn at such a function
a pretence or disguise
verb (intransitive)
to participate in a masquerade; disguise oneself
to dissemble
Derived Forms
masquerader, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Spanish mascarada, from mascaramask
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for masquerade

1590s, "assembly of people wearing masks and disguises," from French mascarade or Spanish mascarada "masked party or dance," from Italian mascarata "a ball at which masks are worn," variant of mascherata "masquerade," from maschera (see mask (n.)). Figurative sense of "false outward show" is from 1670s.


1650s, from masquerade (n.). Related: Masqueraded; masquerading.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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