conspiracy theory

noun

Definition of conspiracy theory 

: a theory that explains an event or set of circumstances as the result of a secret plot by usually powerful conspirators

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Other Words from conspiracy theory

conspiracy theorist noun

Examples of conspiracy theory in a Sentence

Conspiracy theories sprung up soon after the leader's assassination.

Recent Examples on the Web

Her sister, Jillian Soto, said people’s fake accounts promoted conspiracy theories about the massacre, some of which were used to harass her and other family members. Lisa J. Huriash, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Fake accounts impersonate Parkland shooting victims and their families," 20 Apr. 2018 Trump is fond of tossing out conspiracy theories, even if just to add a sliver of doubt. Aaron Blake, Washington Post, "Rod Rosenstein and Robert Mueller officially rebuke a major Trump conspiracy theory," 13 July 2018 The White House's new communications chief, Bill Shine, is staying silent about his wife's shocking history of racist tweets, anti-vaccine conspiracy theories, etc. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "Trump’s administration is full of kooks and crooks because it’s led by Donald Trump," 11 July 2018 How about the government’s entertaining conspiracy theory that AT&T will coordinate with Comcast to kill rival streaming services? Nilay Patel, The Verge, "The court’s decision to let AT&T and Time Warner merge is ridiculously bad," 15 June 2018 Her absence has created lots of speculation and has given way to conspiracy theories that range from plastic surgery, a move back to New York City, a deal with special counsel Robert Mueller, and even concealing domestic abuse. refinery29.com, "Melania Trump Is Set To Make Her First Public Appearance In Weeks," 4 June 2018 As days have passed into weeks without a sighting of the first lady, speculation about Trump's lack of public schedule spawned several internet conspiracy theories, from plastic surgery to a stealth move back to New York City. Kate Bennett, CNN, "Melania Trump will not join travel to G7, North Korea summits," 3 June 2018 The algorithms promoted 9/11 conspiracy theories, a false story about then-Fox News host Megyn Kelly, and a parody news article about magical iPhone features, which some say were early indicators of Facebook’s misinformation problem. Hamza Shaban, BostonGlobe.com, "Facebook is shutting down its notorious ‘trending’ feature," 2 June 2018 The algorithms promoted 9/11 conspiracy theories, a false story about then-Fox News host Megyn Kelly, and a parody news article about magical iPhone features, which some say were early indicators of Facebook's misinformation problem. Hamza Shaban, chicagotribune.com, "Facebook is shutting down its troubled 'trending' feature," 1 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'conspiracy theory.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of conspiracy theory

1871, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

13 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for conspiracy theory

The first known use of conspiracy theory was in 1871

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More Definitions for conspiracy theory

conspiracy theory

noun

English Language Learners Definition of conspiracy theory

: a theory that explains an event or situation as the result of a secret plan by usually powerful people or groups

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