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Re: White lie

Posted by R. Berg on June 12, 2001

In Reply to: White lie posted by Pyramid on June 11, 2001

: Does anyone know where the phrase white lie,as in telling a white lie, comes from?

The earliest quotation the Oxford English Dictionary has for this phrase, contrasting white lies and black lies, is from 1741. The origin is not explained, but whiteness has long symbolized purity and innocence.