Definition of sophistry in English:



  • 1[mass noun] The use of clever but false arguments, especially with the intention of deceiving.

    ‘trying to argue that I had benefited in any way from the disaster was pure sophistry’
    • ‘Badiou insists that philosophy is the discipline concerned with truth, and that any effort to detract philosophy from this concern is tantamount to sophistry.’
    • ‘It must be confessed that there is an air of sophistry about this argument - and I certainly have doubts about its cogency.’
    • ‘How you tried to deceive us with smug sophistry?’
    • ‘The Guardian's argumentation is pure sophistry.’
    • ‘But Keynes smoothed over the harsh Marxist anti-individualism with artful sophistry and clever rhetoric into something salable to Americans.’
    trickery, deviousness, deceit, deception, dishonesty, cheating, duplicity, guile, cunning, artfulness, wiliness, craft, craftiness, evasion, slyness, chicanery, intrigue, subterfuge, strategy, bluff, pretence
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    1. 1.1[count noun]A fallacious argument.
      • ‘During his literal captivity as a prisoner of war in Kentucky, he becomes figuratively captivated by her sophistries, which are explicitly coded as American.’
      • ‘There are then, several sophistries involved in abdicating our positions to cultural corruption.’
      • ‘I think you've been doing it so long you don't even recognize anymore that they're nothing but sophistries.’
      • ‘Most lawyers, of course, don't internalise their sophistries.’
      • ‘When you bombard them with sophistries, wrong messages and show them only dead-ends, that is where you finally reach.’
      specious reasoning, the use of fallacious arguments, sophism, casuistry, quibbling, equivocation, fallaciousness
      fallacious argument, sophism, fallacy, quibble
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