(16) But there are times when the Sages permitted one to lie, for example, in order to make peace between one man and another (Yebamoth 65b). Similarly, one may praise a bride in the presence of the bridegroom and say that she is lovely and charming, even though she really is not (Kethuboth 17a). A guest (Arakin 16a) who has been well treated by the master of the house should not to say in front of many people, "How good that man is in whose house I was a guest, how much honor he paid me," lest many come to that host who are not worthy to be his guests, and concerning this it is said, "He that blesseth his friend with a loud voice, rising early in the morning, it shall be counted as a curse to him" (Prov. 27:14).
(17) And concerning a tractate of the Talmud, if they ask him if the lesson is fluent in his mouth, modesty demands that he should say, "No." And if he should be late to the synagogue because of marital relations, and they asked him why he delayed, let him ascribe it to something else (Baba Bezi'a 23b). And in all these cases where the Sages permitted one to alter the truth, if he can manage not to lie, that is preferable to lying. For example, if he is asked, "Do you know this particular tractate of the Talmud?" he might answer, "Do you think I know it?" And if he can put off the questioner in some way so as not to lie, that would be very good.