I apologize if this is a duplicate.

On Facebook, a friend posted this up:

What's a word or phrase used to denote a person who says what's convenient when it's convenient, regardless of truthfulness and often at the expense of others, in an effort to assert their own authority, knowledge, and dominance?


2 Answers 2


Machiavellianism may come close to the behaviour you are describing:

  • "the employment of cunning and duplicity in statecraft or in general conduct". Due to their skill at interpersonal manipulation, there has often been an assumption that high Machs possess superior intelligence, or ability to understand other people in social situations.

  • The word comes from the Italian Renaissance diplomat and writer Niccolò Machiavelli, who wrote Il Principe (The Prince), among other works.


  • 1
    +1. This comes very close. Closer than I'd have thought.
    – Tushar Raj
    Jun 25, 2015 at 19:51

I'm going to go with domineering, though the safe thing would be to ask for an example sentence where you hope to use the word.


Assert one’s will over another in an arrogant way

... because I am picturing this person domineering a conversation.

Another potential word is manipulative, which has some good synonyms like machiavelian.

mendatious might work though I'm not that confident on the connotations beyond the dictionary defintions.

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