Definition of falsify in English:



  • 1Alter (information, a document, or evidence) so as to mislead:

    ‘a laboratory which was alleged to have falsified test results’
    • ‘Threats to integrity may include a request to deceive a patient, to withhold information, or to falsify records, as well as verbal abuse from patients and coworkers.’
    • ‘He was sentenced to 15 months in jail for falsifying his identity documents to get a passport to go to Pakistan.’
    • ‘After finding an unqualified buyer, they'd falsify mortgage applications and employment histories just to get a bank to say yes to a loan.’
    • ‘Thousands of unwitting South African women may be married illegally to foreigners who have paid corrupt officials to falsify marriage certificates.’
    • ‘Lynn Geldof told reporters the detection of child trafficking was complicated by the fact that many traffickers are women who falsify documents so as to pose as the children's mothers.’
    • ‘He falsified the medical records of Hazel Wood when she died of serious heart disease because three months earlier he attributed her chest pains to stomach problems.’
    • ‘It was clear that he had covered his tracks by altering records and falsifying death certificates.’
    • ‘The defendant is also alleged to have falsified an accounting document on a loan facility in August 1996.’
    • ‘The women had their passports taken from them and made to sign a blank piece of paper, later used to falsify work-related documents.’
    • ‘He has already been charged with falsifying documents which showed transfer credits totalling over $40m from a bank he owned in Belgrade to an Irish company.’
    • ‘Tribunal lawyers introduced further invoices from a company based in the Czech Republic yesterday to support their theory that he regularly falsified records to conceal the proceeds of property deals in Ireland.’
    • ‘Shipman had falsified his records to create bogus medical histories to explain away the sudden deaths of his victims.’
    • ‘No interest is served when it's easy to duplicate or falsify an identity document.’
    • ‘On 5 January 1996 the police reportedly used his thumb prints to falsify a statement in which he apparently confirmed that his injuries resulted from a fall while he was in the Civil Hospital, soon after he was first examined.’
    • ‘He is also charged with falsifying an accounting document for September 1997 at Matbro contrary to the Theft Act.’
    • ‘He cites evidence that doctors or medics falsified death certificates to cover up homicides.’
    • ‘He was arrested July 19 at the McAllen airport and charged four days later with illegal entry into the US, falsifying information and falsifying a passport.’
    • ‘He was said to have deliberately falsified a document to increase his salary and backdate his pension.’
    • ‘One senior investigator was found by the three judges to have falsified statements attributed to Murphy.’
    • ‘The central bank said it would punish banks which helped businesses to falsify documents regarding their overseas remissions.’
    forge, fake, counterfeit, fabricate, invent, alter, change, doctor, tamper with, fudge, manipulate, massage, adulterate, pervert, corrupt, debase, misrepresent, misreport, distort, warp, embellish, embroider, colour, put a spin on
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  • 2Prove (a statement or theory) to be false:

    ‘the hypothesis is falsified by the evidence’
    • ‘Dr. Rummel claims that my assertions are falsified in my own data.’
    • ‘Ruse does not claim that Christian beliefs have been falsified by evolution.’
    • ‘When Saturn didn't move as predicted, either Newton's theory was falsified, or there was another massive object perturbing the orbit - this turned out to be the planet Uranus.’
    • ‘Given the apparent uniqueness of the north temperate zone populations of the Sedge Wren, it is important to try to falsify this hypothesis relating breeding-site fidelity and styles of song development.’
    • ‘If pendulums do not behave in the way predicted by the theory, then the theory is falsified.’
    • ‘If history is our guide, we would expect future research to support some ideas and falsify others.’
    • ‘Once again Dembski demonstrates that the Design Inference is one based on elimination and our ignorance by arguing that to falsify ID's hypothesis it has to show how it evolved step by step.’
    • ‘Among the ways in which I can falsify the assumptions on which it is based is to change my mind as the result of practical reasoning.’
    • ‘Few physicists say they are looking for ways to falsify superstring theory.’
    • ‘Paup does not reproduce the phenetic clusters, and therefore the null hypothesis is falsified.’
    • ‘Karl Popper long ago argued that empirical observations can never truly confirm a theory, they can only falsify or fail to falsify it.’
    • ‘The failure to find differences in those zones would falsify the hypothesis that mountain lions partitioned space to obtain exclusive use of prey.’
    • ‘It is true, as Rennie states, that Karl Popper's work on falsifying scientific theory has been superseded by other philosophies of science, but we would say that the ‘falsification approach’ is still valid.’
    • ‘I've already named lots of things that could be found that would falsify evolutionary theory completely.’
    • ‘Therefore the Earth's eigenvibrations falsify the Inside-Out theory, but can be easily understood in terms of the Earth's spherical shape, volume and density.’
    • ‘For example, materialism and dualism are contradictory but both theories are coherent and consistent with experience, and there is no empirical event that could falsify either theory.’
    • ‘Some researchers today do not agree that dinosaurs gave rise to birds, and are working to falsify this theory, but so far the evidence for the theory has swamped their efforts.’
    • ‘His explanation that X is not powerful evidence is interpreted as an attempt to falsify the theory.’
    • ‘Our rejection of the alternative hypothesis of a habitat effect is based on failure to falsify the null hypothesis that winter survival among immigrants was unrelated to survival among parents.’
    • ‘Additional experiments are then performed in an attempt to falsify the theory.’
    disprove, show to be false, prove unsound, refute, rebut, deny, debunk, negate, invalidate, contradict, confound, be at odds with, demolish, discredit
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    1. 2.1 Fail to fulfil (a hope, fear, or expectation):
      ‘changes falsify individual expectations’
      • ‘This is because any ‘false trading’ would falsify expectations and therefore change agents evaluations of their assets.’
      • ‘My learned friend reminds me that I should conclude my response to your Honour Justice McHugh's observations about falsifying the expectations of parties, or that what happened falsified someone's expectation.’
      • ‘Her claim in this action falsifies no legitimate assumption or expectation.’


Late Middle English (in falsify): from French falsifier or medieval Latin falsificare, from Latin falsificus making false, from falsus false.