sophist: Meaning and Definition of


Pronunciation: (sof'ist), [key]
— n.
  1. (often cap.)
    1. any of a class of professional teachers in ancient Greece who gave instruction in various fields, as in general culture, rhetoric, politics, or disputation.
    2. a person belonging to this class at a later period who, while professing to teach skill in reasoning, concerned himself with ingenuity and specious effectiveness rather than soundness of argument.
  2. a person who reasons adroitly and speciously rather than soundly.
  3. a philosopher.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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