(third-person singular simple present plays possum, present participle playing possum, simple past and past participle played possum)
- (idiomatic) to feign death; to remain quiet and still to escape attention or remain undetected; to lay low.
- Thinking fast, we played possum hoping the bear wouldn't bother us.
- The soldier played possum, fooling the sniper.
- To keep the focus away from his client, the lawyer basically played possum during the entire complex trial, and his tactic paid off with an acquittal.
- (idiomatic) to feign sleep, illness, etc.
- When we used to get home late at night, I would play possum so my daddy would carry me inside and put me in bed.
- (idiomatic, dated) to dissemble or to feign ignorance; to disguise or conceal something in order to deceive.