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Idiomatic Expressions about Honesty & Dishonesty (Part 2)

23/11/16 Idiomatic Expressions about Honesty & Dishonesty (Part 2)


face value If you take something at its face value, you assume that it is genuinely what it appears to be.
The car seems to be in good condition, but don’t take it at its face value; get a mechanic to check it out.
fair and square If something is obtained or won fair and square, it is done in an honest and open manner, the rules are respected and there is no cheating or lying.
Gavin won the competition fair and square – there was no doubt about the result.
false pretenses If you obtain something under false pretenses, you deceive others by lying about your identity, qualifications, financial or social position, in order to get what you want.
The journalist obtained the interview under false pretenses.
five finger discount If somebody gets a five-finger discount, they take something without paying.  In other words, they steal.
How could he afford that watch? Who knows – perhaps with a five-finger discount!
fly-by-night A fly-by-night person, business or venture is considered untrustworthy because they operate briefly and disappear overnight
I bought it in one of those fly-by-night stores and now I can’t exchange it.  The place has closed down.
funny business A business which is conducted in a deceitful, dishonest or unethical manner is called funny business.
I’ve got suspicions about that association.  I think they’re up to some funny business.
grease someone’s palm If you accuse someone of greasing somebody’s palm, you are accusing them of giving money to someone in order to gain an unfair advantage or to obtain something they want.
In some countries, it is common practice to grease government officials’ palms.
hand in glove Two or more people who are in collusion, or work in close association, are said to be hand in glove.
After the match, it was discovered that he was hand in glove with the referee.
ill-gotten gains Money, profit or benefits that are made in a dishonest or illegal manner are called ill-gotten gains.
He won money by cheating and is now enjoying his ill-gotten gains.
live a lie If you spend your life hiding something important about yourself, or inventing something which is not true, you live a lie.
To hide his humble origins, he told his wife he had no family and spent his life living a lie.
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