Ask Difference

Lie Definition and Meaning

By Urooj Arif & Maham Liaqat — Updated on March 6, 2024
Lie means to make a false statement with the intent to deceive. e.g., It's wrong to lie to your friends.

Lie Definitions

To be in a horizontal or resting position on a surface.
The book lies on the table.
To exist or remain in a certain state.
The solution lies in education.
To create a false or misleading impression.
The silence might lie about the situation's urgency.
To be situated or located.
The small town lies between two mountains.
To rest or recline leisurely.
She likes to lie by the pool on sunny days.
To depend on or be decided by.
The final decision lies with the committee.
To place oneself in a flat position, typically to rest or sleep.
He lies down for a nap every afternoon.
To be or place oneself at rest in a flat, horizontal, or recumbent position; recline
He lay under a tree to sleep.
To be placed on or supported by a surface that is usually horizontal
Dirty dishes lay on the table. See Usage Note at lay1.
To be or remain in a specified condition
The dust has lain undisturbed for years. He lay sick in bed.
To exist; reside
Our sympathies lie with the plaintiff.
To consist or have as a basis. Often used with in
The strength of his performance lies in his training.
To occupy a position or place
The lake lies beyond this hill.
To extend
Our land lies between these trees and the river.
To be buried in a specified place.
(Law) To be admissible or maintainable.
(Archaic) To stay for a night or short while.
To present false information with the intention of deceiving.
To convey a false image or impression
Appearances often lie.
To say or write as a lie.
The manner or position in which something is situated.
A haunt or hiding place of an animal.
(Sports) The position of a golf ball that has come to a stop.
A false statement deliberately presented as being true; a falsehood.
Something meant to deceive or mistakenly accepted as true
Learned his parents had been swindlers and felt his whole childhood had been a lie.
(intransitive) To rest in a horizontal position on a surface.
The book lies on the table;
The snow lies on the roof;
He lies in his coffin
(intransitive) To be placed or situated.
To abide; to remain for a longer or shorter time; to be in a certain state or condition.
To lie waste; to lie fallow; to lie open; to lie hidden; to lie grieving; to lie under one's displeasure; to lie at the mercy of the waves
The paper does not lie smooth on the wall.
Used with in: to be or exist; to belong or pertain; to have an abiding place; to consist.
Used with on/upon: to be incumbent (on); to be the responsibility of a person.
(archaic) To lodge; to sleep.
To be still or quiet, like one lying down to rest.
(legal) To be sustainable; to be capable of being maintained.
(intransitive) To give false information intentionally with intent to deceive.
When Pinocchio lies, his nose grows.
If you are found to have lied in court, you could face a penalty.
While a principle-based approach might claim that lying is always morally wrong, the casuist would argue that, depending upon the details of the case, lying might or might not be illegal or unethical. The casuist might conclude that a person is wrong to lie in legal testimony under oath, but might argue that lying actually is the best moral choice if the lie saves a life.
(intransitive) To convey a false image or impression.
Photographs often lie.
To be mistaken or unintentionally spread false information.
Sorry, I haven't seen your keys anywhere...wait, I lied! They're right there on the coffee table.
(golf) The terrain and conditions surrounding the ball before it is struck.
(disc golf) The terrain and conditions surrounding the disc before it is thrown.
(medicine) The position of a fetus in the womb.
A manner of lying; relative position.
An animal's lair.
An intentionally false statement; an intentional falsehood.
I knew he was telling a lie by his facial expression.
A statement intended to deceive, even if literally true.
(by extension) Anything that misleads or disappoints.
A falsehood uttered or acted for the purpose of deception; an intentional violation of truth; an untruth spoken with the intention to deceive.
The proper notion of a lie is an endeavoring to deceive another by signifying that to him as true, which we ourselves think not to be so.
It is willful deceit that makes a lie. A man may act a lie, as by pointing his finger in a wrong direction when a traveler inquires of him his road.
A fiction; a fable; an untruth.
Anything which misleads or disappoints.
Wishing this lie of life was o'er.
The position or way in which anything lies; the lay, as of land or country.
He surveyed with his own eyes . . . the lie of the country on the side towards Thrace.
To utter falsehood with an intention to deceive; to say or do that which is intended to deceive another, when he a right to know the truth, or when morality requires a just representation.
To rest extended on the ground, a bed, or any support; to be, or to put one's self, in an horizontal position, or nearly so; to be prostate; to be stretched out; - often with down, when predicated of living creatures; as, the book lies on the table; the snow lies on the roof; he lies in his coffin.
The watchful traveler . . . Lay down again, and closed his weary eyes.
To be situated; to occupy a certain place; as, Ireland lies west of England; the meadows lie along the river; the ship lay in port.
To abide; to remain for a longer or shorter time; to be in a certain state or condition; as, to lie waste; to lie fallow; to lie open; to lie hid; to lie grieving; to lie under one's displeasure; to lie at the mercy of the waves; the paper does not lie smooth on the wall.
To be or exist; to belong or pertain; to have an abiding place; to consist; - with in.
Envy lies between beings equal in nature, though unequal in circumstances.
He that thinks that diversion may not lie in hard labor, forgets the early rising and hard riding of huntsmen.
To lodge; to sleep.
Whiles I was now trifling at home, I saw London, . . . where I lay one night only.
Mr. Quinion lay at our house that night.
To be still or quiet, like one lying down to rest.
The wind is loud and will not lie.
To be sustainable; to be capable of being maintained.
What he gets more of her than sharp words, let it lie on my head.
A statement that deviates from or perverts the truth
Norwegian diplomat who was the first Secretary General of the United Nations (1896-1968)
Position or manner in which something is situated
Be located or situated somewhere; occupy a certain position
Be lying, be prostrate; be in a horizontal position;
The sick man lay in bed all day
The books are lying on the shelf
We had to stand for the entire performance!
Originate (in);
The problems dwell in the social injustices in this country
Be and remain in a particular state or condition;
Lie dormant
Tell an untruth; pretend with intent to deceive;
Don't lie to your parents
She lied when she told me she was only 29
Have a place in relation to something else;
The fate of Bosnia lies in the hands of the West
The responsibility rests with the Allies
Assume a reclining position;
Lie down on the bed until you feel better
To present false information as being true.
He decided to lie about his age.
To be buried in a particular place.
The ancient ruins lie beneath the city.
To tell an untruth or falsehood.
Children are taught not to lie.

Lie Snonyms


The action or offense of giving a false or misleading account of the nature of something.
The advertisement was guilty of misrepresentation.


A small or trivial lie.
He told a fib about his whereabouts last night.


A lie, especially something invented or concocted.
His story was a complete fabrication.


Speaking or acting in an evasive way to avoid telling the truth.
His prevarication made everyone doubt his integrity.


The fact of being untrue, incorrect, or insincere.
He was dismayed by the falsity of the accusations against him.


The mendacity of his claim became apparent to everyone.


The action of deceiving someone.
He used deception to gain their trust.


Something that is untrue.
The rumor was an untruth that spread rapidly.


A false statement; a lie.
The article was filled with falsehoods and inaccuracies.


A gross or blatant lie.
He told a whopper to avoid getting into trouble.

Lie Idioms & Phrases

Let sleeping dogs lie

To avoid bringing up old problems.
Regarding their past argument, he decided to let sleeping dogs lie.

The lie of the land

Understanding of a situation or environment.
Before making any decisions, get the lie of the land.

Lie low

To keep out of sight or avoid attention.
After the controversy, she chose to lie low for a while.

As you make your bed, so you must lie in it

You must accept the consequences of your actions.
He regretted his choices, but he knew he had to lie in the bed he'd made.

Lie in one's throat

To tell a serious or harmful lie.
If he says he was there, he's lying in his throat.

White lie

A harmless or trivial lie, often told to avoid hurting someone's feelings.
She told a white lie about liking his cooking.

Lie through one's teeth

To tell a blatant lie.
He was lying through his teeth about where he'd been.

Give the lie to

To show something to be false.
His calm demeanor gave the lie to his inner turmoil.

Lie at someone's door

To be someone's responsibility or fault.
The mistake lies at the manager's door.

Lie in wait

To wait in hiding for the right moment.
The predator lies in wait for its prey.

Lie at the heart of

To be the most important part of something.
Trust lies at the heart of their relationship.

Lie through one's hat

To tell unbelievable lies.
He's not just exaggerating; he's lying through his hat.

Lie heavy on (one's heart or mind)

To cause someone to feel worried or guilty.
The secret lay heavy on her heart.

Lie ahead

To exist in the future; to be something one will face or deal with.
Many challenges lie ahead for the new government.

Lie at anchor

For a ship to be anchored and stationary.
The ship lay at anchor in the bay, waiting for the storm to pass.

Lie in state

For a deceased person's body to be placed on public display.
The leader lay in state for three days.

Live a lie

To live in a way that is dishonest or hides one's true self.
He was tired of living a lie and decided to come clean.

Lie in one's face

To tell a lie directly to someone.
I couldn't believe she would lie in my face like that.

Lie on one's oars

To rest; to stop making an effort.
After achieving his goal, he lay on his oars for a while.

Lie back and think of England

An ironic or humorous phrase suggesting resignation to an unpleasant situation.
During the boring lecture, he just lay back and thought of England.

Lie Example Sentences

If you lie about your qualifications, it could come back to haunt you.
The keys lie on the kitchen counter.
Many historical artifacts still lie undiscovered.
Advertisements can sometimes lie about a product's effectiveness.
The true challenge lies in maintaining the peace.
On weekends, I just want to lie in bed and read.
The responsibility for this decision lies entirely with the board.
To avoid trouble, some people choose to lie by omission.
He prefers to lie on the couch and watch TV after work.
After the long hike, we were too tired to do anything but lie on the ground.
The picturesque village lies in a lush valley.
It's important to teach kids that it's harmful to lie.
She told her child that it's better to face consequences than to lie.
The park lies just a few blocks from here.
The power to change things often lies within ourselves.

Common Curiosities

Why is it called lie?

"Lie" comes from the Old English "leogan," meaning "to tell a falsehood," and "licgan," meaning "to be in a horizontal position."

How many syllables are in lie?

Lie has one syllable.

What is a stressed syllable in lie?

The entire word "lie" is stressed, as it consists of only one syllable.

How do we divide lie into syllables?

As a single-syllable word, "lie" is not divided.

How is lie used in a sentence?

"Lie" can refer to telling a falsehood, e.g., I just want to lie in the sun.

What is the pronunciation of lie?

Lie is pronounced as /laɪ/.

What part of speech is lie?

"Lie" is a verb.

What is the third form of lie?

The third form for "to recline" is "lain," and for "to tell a falsehood," it remains "lied."

What is the second form of lie?

The second form for "to recline" is "lay," and for "to tell a falsehood," it is "lied."

What is the first form of lie?

The first form is "lie" for both meanings.

What is the plural form of lie?

As a verb, "lie" does not have a plural form. Its conjugation changes with the subject.

What is the opposite of lie?

The opposite of "lie" (to tell a falsehood) is "tell the truth," and for "lie" (to recline), it's "stand."

Is lie an adverb?

No, "lie" is not an adverb.

What is the verb form of lie?

"Lie" itself is the base form of the verb for both meanings (to recline and to tell a falsehood).

What is the root word of lie?

The root of "lie" (to recline) is the Old English "licgan," and for "lie" (to tell a falsehood), it's "leogan."

Is the word lie Gerund?

The gerund form of "lie" is "lying."

Is the word “lie” a Direct object or an Indirect object?

"Lie" does not typically serve as a direct or indirect object, as it is a verb.

What is another term for lie?

Another term for "lie" (to tell a falsehood) is "fib," and for "lie" (to recline), it's "recline."

Is lie a noun or adjective?

"Lie" is primarily a verb, but it can also be a noun when referring to a falsehood.

Is lie an abstract noun?

When used as a noun to refer to a falsehood, "lie" can be considered an abstract noun.

Is lie a negative or positive word?

"Lie" generally has a negative connotation, especially when referring to telling a falsehood.

Is lie a vowel or consonant?

The word "lie" starts with a consonant sound.

Is lie a countable noun?

When "lie" is used as a noun (referring to a falsehood), it is countable.

Which preposition is used with lie?

Prepositions like "about" are commonly used with "lie" when referring to telling a falsehood.

What is the singular form of lie?

"Lie" remains the same in singular form, as it is a verb.

Which determiner is used with lie?

Determiners are not typically used with "lie" as it is a verb.

Which vowel is used before lie?

The vowel used before "lie" depends on the preceding word in a sentence.

Which article is used with lie?

Articles are not typically used directly with "lie" as it is a verb.

Is lie a collective noun?

No, "lie" is not a collective noun.

Is the lie term a metaphor?

"Lie" can be used metaphorically, especially in phrases like "lie heavy on one's heart."

Is the word lie imperative?

"Lie" can be used in the imperative mood, e.g., "Lie down."

Which conjunction is used with lie?

Conjunctions like "and" or "but" can be used in sentences involving "lie."

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Urooj Arif
Urooj is a skilled content writer at Ask Difference, known for her exceptional ability to simplify complex topics into engaging and informative content. With a passion for research and a flair for clear, concise writing, she consistently delivers articles that resonate with our diverse audience.
Co-written by
Maham Liaqat

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