1.a wrong action attributable to bad judgment or ignorance or inattention"he made a bad mistake" "she was quick to point out my errors" "I could understand his English in spite of his grammatical faults"
2.a misconception resulting from incorrect reasoning
FallacyFal"la*cy (făl"lȧ*s�), n.; pl. Fallacies (făl"lȧ*sĭz). [OE. fallace, fallas, deception, F. fallace, fr. L. fallacia, fr. fallax deceitful, deceptive, fr. fallere to deceive. See Fail.]
1. Deceptive or false appearance; deceitfulness; that which misleads the eye or the mind; deception.
Winning by conquest what the first man lost,
By fallacy surprised. Milton.
2. (Logic) An argument, or apparent argument, which professes to be decisive of the matter at issue, while in reality it is not; a sophism.
Syn. -- Deception; deceit; mistake. -- Fallacy, Sophistry. A fallacy is an argument which professes to be decisive, but in reality is not; sophistry is also false reasoning, but of so specious and subtle a kind as to render it difficult to expose its fallacy. Many fallacies are obvious, but the evil of sophistry lies in its consummate art. “Men are apt to suffer their minds to be misled by fallacies which gratify their passions. Many persons have obscured and confounded the nature of things by their wretched sophistry; though an act be never so sinful, they will strip it of its guilt.” South.
definition of Wikipedia
Accident (fallacy) • Ad populum fallacy • Affective fallacy • Animistic fallacy • Appeal to majority fallacy • Argument from fallacy • Association fallacy • Aurgumentum ad populum fallacy • Bare assertion fallacy • Base rate fallacy • Berkson fallacy • Berkson's fallacy • Biographical fallacy • Complexity (fallacy) • Conjunction fallacy • Continuum fallacy • Deductive fallacy • Definist fallacy • Devolution (biological fallacy) • Devolution (fallacy) • Double counting (fallacy) • Ecological fallacy • Equal transit-time fallacy • Etymological fallacy • Existential fallacy • Fallacy fallacy • Fallacy of Misplaced Concreteness • Fallacy of composition • Fallacy of distribution • Fallacy of division • Fallacy of equivication • Fallacy of exclusive premises • Fallacy of four terms • Fallacy of ignoring a common cause • Fallacy of misplaced concreteness • Fallacy of necessity • Fallacy of prescience • Fallacy of quoting out of context • Fallacy of reification • Fallacy of the Consequent • Fallacy of the four terms • Fallacy of the single cause • Fallacy of the undistributed middle • Fallacy of undistributed middle • Formal fallacy • Furtive fallacy • Gambler's fallacy • Genetic fallacy • Historian fallacy • Historian's fallacy • Historical fallacy • Hoyle's fallacy • Informal fallacy • Intensional fallacy • Intentional fallacy • Inverse gambler fallacy • Inverse gambler's fallacy • Invincible ignorance fallacy • Just world fallacy • Just-world fallacy • Lewontin's Fallacy • Linguistic fallacy • Luddite fallacy • Ludic fallacy • Lump of jobs fallacy • Lump of labor fallacy • Lump of labour fallacy • Masked man fallacy • Mathematical fallacy • McNamara fallacy • Moralistic fallacy • N = 1 fallacy • Narrative fallacy • Naturalistic fallacy • Netherlands fallacy • Nirvana fallacy • Package-deal fallacy • Pathetic fallacy • Pendulum rocket fallacy • Perfect solution fallacy • Planning fallacy • Prosecutor's fallacy • Psychologist's fallacy • Rationalization (fallacy) • Regression fallacy • Reification (fallacy) • Relativist fallacy • Scotsman fallacy • Spotlight fallacy • Straw person fallacy • Syllogistic fallacy • Texas sharpshooter fallacy • Thatcherite fallacy • The Rhapsodic Fallacy • Third-cause fallacy
fail, go wrong, miscarry, wrongly - error, fallacy, fault, misconception, misconstruction, mistake, oversight - error, miscue, mistake, parapraxis, slip, slip-up - erroneousness, error, mistake - errancy - misapprehension, mistake, misunderstanding - error, mistake - blame, fault - blame, incrimination, inculpation - blamable, blameable, blameful, blameworthy, censurable, culpable, reprehensible[Dérivé]
absolve, free, justify[Ant.]
conception, idea, thought[Hyper.]
In logic and rhetoric, a fallacy is usually an improper argumentation in reasoning often resulting in a misconception or presumption. Literally, a fallacy is "an error in reasoning that renders an argument logically invalid". By accident or design, fallacies may exploit emotional triggers in the listener or participant (appeal to emotion), or take advantage of social relationships between people (e.g. argument from authority). Fallacious arguments are often structured using rhetorical patterns that obscure any logical argument.
Though an argument is not "logically valid", it is not necessarily the case that the conclusion is incorrect. It simply means that the conclusion cannot logically be arrived at using that argument.
Though often used unintentionally, fallacies can be used purposefully to win arguments regardless of the merits. Among such devices, discussed in more detail below, are: "ignoring the question" to divert argument to unrelated issues using a red herring, making the argument personal (argumentum ad hominem) and discrediting the opposition's character, "begging the question" (petitio principi), the use of the non-sequitur, false cause and effect (post hoc ergo propter hoc), bandwagoning (everyone says so), the "false dilemma" or "either-or fallacy" in which the situation is oversimplified, "card-stacking" or selective use of facts, and "false analogy". Another common device is the "false generalization", an abstraction of the argument that shifts discussion to platitudes where the facts of the matter are lost. There are many, many more tricks to divert attention from careful exploration of a subject.
Verbal fallacies are those in which a conclusion is obtained by improper or ambiguous use of words. They are generally classified as follows.
Magic Robe fallacy
Wherin we believe that a high-court judge is always more apt than the outsider at deciding what is true.
This can happen in conjunction with Equivocation, whereby word or phrase is used literally in one part of an argument but figuratively in another part of the argument.
Here the problem is that the word good has different meanings, which is to say that it is an ambiguous word. In the premise, Timmy says that Billy is good at some particular activity, in this case tennis. In the conclusion, Timmy states that Billy is a morally good person. These are clearly two different senses of the word "good". The premise might be true but the conclusion can still be false: Billy might be the best tennis player in the world but a rotten person morally. However, it is not legitimate to infer he is a bad person on the ground there has been a fallacious argument on the part of Timmy. Nothing concerning Billy's moral qualities is to be inferred from the premise. Appropriately, since it plays on an ambiguity, this sort of fallacy is called the fallacy of equivocation, that is, equating two incompatible terms or claims.
One posits the argument:
This argument has the appearance of an inference that applies transitivity of the two-placed relation is better than, which in this critique we grant is a valid property. The argument is an example of syntactic ambiguity. In fact, the first premise semantically does not predicate an attribute of the subject, as would for instance the assertion
In fact it is semantically equivalent to the following universal quantification:
So instantiating this fact with eating a sandwich, it logically follows that
Note that the premise A sandwich is better than nothing does not provide anything to this argument. This fact really means something such as
Thus this is a fallacy of equivocation.
However, it is often used more generally in informal discourse to mean an argument which is problematic for any reason, and thus encompasses informal fallacies as well as formal fallacies.
The presence of a formal fallacy in a deductive argument does not imply anything about the argument's premises or its conclusion (see fallacy fallacy). Both may actually be true, or even more probable as a result of the argument (e.g., appeal to authority), but the deductive argument is still invalid because the conclusion does not follow from the premises in the manner described. By extension, an argument can contain a formal fallacy even if the argument is not a deductive one; for instance an inductive argument that incorrectly applies principles of probability or causality can be said to commit a formal fallacy.
A different approach to understanding and classifying fallacies is provided by argumentation theory; see for instance the van Eemeren, Grootendorst. In this approach, an argument is regarded as an interactive protocol between individuals which attempts to resolve a disagreement. The protocol is regulated by certain rules of interaction, and violations of these rules are fallacies. Many of the fallacies in the list above are best understood as being fallacies in this sense.
Of other classifications of fallacies in general the most famous are those of Francis Bacon and J. S. Mill. Bacon (Novum Organum, Aph. 33, 38 sqq.) divided fallacies into four Idola (Idols, i.e. False Appearances), which summarize the various kinds of mistakes to which the human intellect is prone. With these should be compared the Offendicula of Roger Bacon, contained in the Opus maius, pt. i. J. S. Mill discussed the subject in book v. of his Logic, and Jeremy Bentham's Book of Fallacies (1824) contains valuable remarks. See Rd. Whateley's Logic, bk. v.; A. de Morgan, Formal Logic (1847) ; A. Sidgwick, Fallacies (1883) and other textbooks.
|Look up fallacy in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.|
Dictionary and translator for handheld
New : sensagent is now available on your handheld
A windows (pop-into) of information (full-content of Sensagent) triggered by double-clicking any word on your webpage. Give contextual explanation and translation from your sites !
With a SensagentBox, visitors to your site can access reliable information on over 5 million pages provided by Sensagent.com. Choose the design that fits your site.
Improve your site content
Add new content to your site from Sensagent by XML.
Crawl products or adds
Get XML access to reach the best products.
Index images and define metadata
Get XML access to fix the meaning of your metadata.
Please, email us to describe your idea.
Lettris is a curious tetris-clone game where all the bricks have the same square shape but different content. Each square carries a letter. To make squares disappear and save space for other squares you have to assemble English words (left, right, up, down) from the falling squares.
Boggle gives you 3 minutes to find as many words (3 letters or more) as you can in a grid of 16 letters. You can also try the grid of 16 letters. Letters must be adjacent and longer words score better. See if you can get into the grid Hall of Fame !
Change the target language to find translations.
Tips: browse the semantic fields (see From ideas to words) in two languages to learn more.