cre·​dence | \ ˈkrē-dᵊn(t)s How to pronounce credence (audio) \

Definition of credence

1a : mental acceptance as true or real give credence to gossip
b : credibility sense 1 lends credence to the theory an idea that is gaining credence
2 : credentials used in the phrase letters of credence
3 [ Middle French, from Old Italian credenza ] : a Renaissance sideboard used chiefly for valuable plate
4 : a small table where the bread and wine rest before consecration

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Synonyms & Antonyms for credence


confidence, faith, stock, trust


distrust, mistrust

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Choose the Right Synonym for credence

belief, faith, credence, credit mean assent to the truth of something offered for acceptance. belief may or may not imply certitude in the believer. my belief that I had caught all the errors faith almost always implies certitude even where there is no evidence or proof. an unshakable faith in God credence suggests intellectual assent without implying anything about grounds for assent. a theory now given credence by scientists credit may imply assent on grounds other than direct proof. gave full credit to the statement of a reputable witness

What Is The Difference Between credence and belief?

Credence is close in meaning to belief, but there are differences. Unlike belief, credence is seldom used in connection with faith in a religion or philosophy. Instead credence is often used in reference to reports, rumors, and opinions. And, unlike belief, it tends to be used with the words give, lack, lend,and gain. So a new piece of evidence may lend credence to the alibi of a criminal suspect. Claims that a political candidate can become the next President gain credence only after the candidate wins a few primaries. And although stories about Elvis sightings persist, they lack credence for most people.

Examples of credence in a Sentence

The theory is gaining credence among scientists. I'm afraid I don't put much credence in common gossip.

Recent Examples on the Web

Its blockbuster debut lent credence to the idea that investors are interested in the intersection of e-commerce and luxury fashion. Sangeeta Singh-kurtz, Quartzy, "Farfetch’s streetwear push may be too far-fetched for investors," 9 Aug. 2019 But a spot-check of flights roughly the same distance as trips from Charleston gives some credence to road-warrior fears. Scott Mccartney, WSJ, "Are Your Frequent-Flier Miles About to Lose Value?," 19 Dec. 2018 Einhorn is a Tesla short, which lends some credence to Matt Levine’s theory that Tesla shorts are sabotaging Tesla by… hurting Musk’s feelings. Elizabeth Lopatto, The Verge, "Welcome to This Week in Elon," 31 Aug. 2018 Millie Bobby Brown and Natalie Portman Twitter started buzzing about the possibility that Millie Bobby Brown is a doppelgänger for a young Natalie Portman a while ago, and Satural Night Live even gave some credence to that observation. Elizabeth Denton, Allure, "16 Pairs of Celebrities Who Look Like Identical Twins," 3 Aug. 2018 According to the researchers, this lends credence to the thought that trypophobia may really be rooted in disgust, not fear. Natasha Lavender, SELF, "Is Trypophobia Really a Fear of Holes or Something Else Entirely?," 26 July 2019 Nor will Mueller’s testimony lend credence to Deep State conspiracy theories, however much time House Intelligence committee ranking member and bad faith aficionado Devin Nunes gets at the dais. Brian Barrett, WIRED, "How to Watch Robert Mueller's Testimony—and What to Expect," 23 July 2019 The numbers give credence to rider complaints about the lack of security and safety in the system, which have caused BART’s approval ratings to tank. Rachel Swan,, "Violent crime on BART more than doubles in four years," 25 June 2019 There is some belief that the name originated because crows would sit in judgement of each other and on occasion mete out the ultimate punishment, but nothing in science, biology or bird study gives credence to the tale. Joan Morris, The Mercury News, "Did San Ramon crows murder a friend, or did they just not like him?," 24 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'credence.' 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 credence

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for credence

Middle English, from Anglo-French or Medieval Latin; Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin credentia, from Latin credent-, credens, present participle of credere to believe, trust — more at creed

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Dictionary Entries near credence



Credé's method





Statistics for credence

Last Updated

25 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for credence

The first known use of credence was in the 14th century

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English Language Learners Definition of credence

: belief that something is true
: the quality of being believed or accepted as something true or real

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Comments on credence

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authorized for issue (as a bond)

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