Idiom:  lead someone on


Idiom:  lead someone on

  • to deceive someone and be dishonest (often to get something from them)

Example sentences

  • My girlfriend was leading me on when she accepted my marriage proposal—in fact, she was only trying to make her old boyfriend jealous.
  • You need to tell the intern that he won’t get a job at the end of his internship—it’s not fair to lead him on like this.
  • If you're not interested in dating that girl you really shouldn't keep leading her on with flirty text messages.
  • The salesman was leading me on the whole time—he didn't actually have the car that I wanted to buy in stock.
  • When you lead your clients on with false advertising about the hotel they will leave horrible reviews about it in TripAdvisor.
  • Don't be surprised if this business venture doesn't work out.  It seems like your partner is leading you on.
  • We didn't buy the house after all because we had a feeling the owners were leading us on about something.


  • lead someone astray
  • string someone along
  • steer someone in the wrong direction
  • put on a false front
  • put on an act

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