Where Did the Phrase “Barefaced Lie” Come From and What Does the Expression Mean?

A “barefaced lie” is one that is obvious and told straight out without flinching by someone who is either very stupid or very brave.

The phrase is interchangeable with a “bald-faced lie,” in reference to the sixteenth century when most men wore beards, sideburns, and mustaches.

Only the rebellious ones who shaved their faces bare were considered bold enough to tell an obvious lie.

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

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