cred·​u·​lous | \ ˈkre-jə-ləs How to pronounce credulous (audio) \

Definition of credulous

1 : ready to believe especially on slight or uncertain evidence accused of swindling credulous investors Few people are credulous enough to believe such nonsense.
2 : proceeding from credulity credulous superstitions

Other Words from credulous

credulously adverb
credulousness noun

Did you know?

The cred in credulous is from Latin credere, meaning “to believe” or “to trust.” Credulous describes people who would be wise to be a bit more skeptical, or things that ought to be approached with some skepticism. The word has a useful opposite in the term incredulous, which often describes something that shows or suggests one’s lack of belief (“listening with an incredulous smile”), or someone who cannot or will not believe something, as in “an outrageous statement that left them incredulous.” (You’ll do well not to confuse incredulous with incredible.)

Examples of credulous in a Sentence

Few people are credulous enough to believe such nonsense.
Recent Examples on the Web Nonetheless, the show has often been credulous regarding law enforcement claims. ELLE, 11 Aug. 2022 The audience for this performance of fake virtue consists solely of Manchin himself, a few of his centrist colleagues, and the overly credulous members of the Washington press corps. Ryan Cooper, The Week, 29 June 2021 At one startling point, the survivor even dresses up as the deceased, with a fake bullet hole in his temple, in order to console his credulous mother, who worries that the ghost of her son may not find peace. Anthony Lane, The New Yorker, 15 July 2022 The Zuckerian approach did occasionally misfire, with live coverage of Trump rallies, credulous reporting on the Steele dossier, other embarrassments, and a general surfeit of commentary and analysis. Erik Wemple, Washington Post, 21 June 2022 The ramifications of not disclosing these ties can touch anyone, from your credulous grandmother all the way up to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Wired, 15 July 2022 Like all efforts to brand the modern GOP as populist or even populism-curious, arguing that the party has abandoned the core of its last half-century of politics requires credulous and contorted readings of statements intended as mere rhetoric. Ed Burmila, The New Republic, 15 June 2022 Even credulous reporters will think twice before running with another Fusion lead. Kimberley A. Strassel, WSJ, 12 May 2022 Like the Afghanistan debacle, Theranos is a horror story of wishful thinking, credulous media, and celebrity impunity. Samuel Goldman, The Week, 10 Sep. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of credulous

1553, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for credulous

Latin credulus, from credere to believe, entrust — more at creed

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The first known use of credulous was in 1553

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Last Updated

24 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Credulous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Oct. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on credulous

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for credulous

Nglish: Translation of credulous for Spanish Speakers


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