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[sof-iz-uh m] /ˈsɒf ɪz əm/
a specious argument for displaying ingenuity in reasoning or for deceiving someone.
any false argument; fallacy.
Origin of sophism
1300-50; < Latin sophisma sophistry < Greek sóphisma orig., acquired skill, method, derivative of sophízesthai to act the sophist, become wise; replacing earlier sophim, Middle English < Middle French sophime < Latin
Related forms
antisophism, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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British Dictionary definitions for sophism


an instance of sophistry Compare paralogism
Word Origin
C14: from Latin sophisma, from Greek: ingenious trick, from sophizesthai to use clever deceit, from sophos wise, clever
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for sophism

early 15c., earlier sophime (mid-14c.), "specious but fallacious argument devised for purposes of deceit or to exercise one's ingenuity," from Old French sophime "a fallacy, false argument" (Modern French sophisme), from Latin sophisma, from Greek sophisma "clever device, skillful act, stage-trick," from stem of sophizesthai "become wise" (see sophist).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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