Definition of on (or under) the pretext in US English:

on (or under) the pretext

phrase

  • Giving the specified reason as one's justification.

    ‘the police raided Grand River on the pretext of looking for moonshiners’
    • ‘I excused myself on the pretext of getting my card, which I said was in my bag in the bedroom (in truth it was in my pocket).’
    • ‘Yet we are able to justify and rationalise our actions on the pretext that our sins are lesser as after all we are men and women who were ordained for each other.’
    • ‘I could bow out of teaching for them on the pretext of needing to care for my friend without admitting the truth.’
    • ‘When I finished, a few people took the microphone on the pretext of asking a question.’
    • ‘One taste and you'll be tempted to take an entire cake home on the pretext that it's your birthday.’