White lie – noun; a lie that won’t hurt others. “White lie” is usually used with the verb “to tell.” A white lie is often told to a person who does not want to hear the truth or will be negatively effected by the truth.
Jane: Look at this dress! I love the way the orange stripes match my blue eyes, don’t you?
Eriko: Ah, sure. Orange and blue look lovely together.
Jane: I’m going to try it on. I’ll be right back.
Tom: Eriko, you really think that orange dress matches her blue eyes?
Eriko: No, but she really thinks so. It was just a little white lie. The truth might hurt her feelings.
Jane: I’m back! It feels fantastic! And it looks great! Tom, what do you guys think?
Tom: The stripes really highlight your figure!
Jane: Thanks, Tom. I’m going to buy it!
Jane leaves. Eriko turns to Tom.
Tom: You’re right, Eriko. A white lie isn’t so bad.
* From Speaking Savvy, which is used as the speaking/listening textbook for level 5…