Fallacy Fal"la*cy (f[a^]l"l[.a]*s[y^]), n.; pl. {Fallacies} (f[a^]l"l[.a]*s[i^]z). [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. [1913 Webster]

Winning by conquest what the first man lost, By fallacy surprised. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

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.

Usage: {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. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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