Definition of specious in English:



  • 1Superficially plausible, but actually wrong.

    ‘a specious argument’
    • ‘It is a specious and cynical reference at best.’
    • ‘The court determined this argument was specious.’
    • ‘Kindly keep your preposterous, specious opinions out of conversations that don't concern you!’
    • ‘We should take care to use arguments that aren't specious.’
    • ‘The argument is obviously somewhat specious.’
    • ‘If money is abused, there's going to be a crisis; at some point there will be a ‘run’ from specious financial claims.’
    • ‘This argument was presumably specious since the integrated system has since been jettisoned in favor of subcontracting.’
    • ‘Because the charges against the airlines were specious but successful, every pilot must worry that his good-faith effort to protect his passengers will trigger federal retaliation.’
    • ‘Although the argument was specious, since everyone knew the significance of the vote, he certainly had been evasive when questioned directly on the issue.’
    • ‘Criticism should be founded on a writer's life and work, not just on previous criticism or specious theories.’
    • ‘These arguments are specious, but they are based on rosy assumptions or bad analogies.’
    • ‘The case for large bonuses on top of large salaries is essentially specious, at least for anyone of my generation.’
    • ‘This is a specious argument that he has been making.’
    • ‘The usual specious arguments we see in one country are now being regurgitated in others.’
    • ‘I've always found this kind of argument a little specious, since most people don't know and could care less about when a composer wrote a work.’
    • ‘Many proponents of personal accounts have used specious arguments about the potential for superior rates of return.’
    • ‘Hucksters flaunted their specious cure-ails on posters, broadsides, and other printed formats.’
    • ‘What he required of us was that we avoided specious or muddled argument.’
    • ‘Occasionally, you hear the specious argument that musicians don't need the money they might lose to the Internet services.’
    • ‘We can't rally around specious information that diminishes our ability to think critically about real and present health threats.’
    1. 1.1Misleading in appearance, especially misleadingly attractive.
      ‘the music trade gives Golden Oldies a specious appearance of novelty’
      plausible but wrong, seemingly correct, misleading, deceptive, false, fallacious, unsound, casuistic, sophistic
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Late Middle English (in the sense ‘beautiful’): from Latin speciosus fair, from species (see species).