Last modified on 21 November 2011, at 22:40



Kanji in this term
Grade: 6 Grade: S Grade: 3


First recorded in the Edo period. The kanji used are examples of ateji.

According to one theory, formed from 護摩 (goma, a holy fire in esoteric Buddhism) + verbalizing suffix かす (kasu), from a common fraud perpetrated in the Edo period of dressing as a monk and selling regular ash purported to be ash from such holy fires.

Alternately, from 胡麻菓子 (goma kashi), from a sesame (胡麻 (goma)) candy (菓子 (kashi)) in the Edo period called 胡麻胴乱 (goma dōran) and notable for being a mostly empty shell.

Alternative formsEdit


誤魔化す (godan conjugation, hiragana ごまかす, romaji gomakasu)

  1. to cheat or deceive
  2. to lie
  3. to evade a question or deflect attention; to gloss over a mistake; to fudge; to bullshit
  4. to embezzle
  5. to defraud or swindle