Archive for February 13th, 2014

February 13, 2014

Potemkin Village

sochi by David Horsey

Potemkin village by Slug Signorino

The phrase Potemkin [poh-tem-kinvillages was originally used to describe a fake village, built only to impress. According to the story, Russian statesman Grigory Potemkin erected fake settlements along the banks of the Dnieper River in order to fool Empress Catherine II during her visit to Crimea in 1787.

The phrase is now used, typically in politics and economics, to describe any construction (literal or figurative) built solely to deceive others into thinking that some situation is better than it really is. Some modern historians claim the original story is exaggerated.

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