delusion

noun
de·​lu·​sion | \ di-ˈlü-zhən How to pronounce delusion (audio) , dē- \

Definition of delusion

1a : something that is falsely or delusively believed or propagated under the delusion that they will finish on schedule delusions of grandeur
b psychology : a persistent false psychotic belief regarding the self or persons or objects outside the self that is maintained despite indisputable evidence to the contrary the delusion that someone was out to hurt him also : the abnormal state marked by such beliefs
2 : the act of tricking or deceiving someone : the state of being deluded … accused the Bohemian of having practised the most abominable arts of delusion among the younger brethren.— Walter Scott

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Other Words from delusion

delusional \ di-​ˈlüzh-​nəl How to pronounce delusion (audio) , dē-​ , -​ˈlü-​zhə-​nᵊl \ adjective
delusionary \ di-​ˈlü-​zhə-​ˌner-​ē How to pronounce delusion (audio) , dē-​ \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for delusion

delusion, illusion, hallucination, mirage mean something that is believed to be true or real but that is actually false or unreal. delusion implies an inability to distinguish between what is real and what only seems to be real, often as the result of a disordered state of mind. delusions of persecution illusion implies a false ascribing of reality based on what one sees or imagines. an illusion of safety hallucination implies impressions that are the product of disordered senses, as because of mental illness or drugs. suffered from terrifying hallucinations mirage in its extended sense applies to an illusory vision, dream, hope, or aim. claimed a balanced budget is a mirage

Examples of delusion in a Sentence

He has delusions about how much money he can make at that job. He is living under the delusion that he is incapable of making mistakes. She is under the delusion that we will finish on time. As the illness progressed, his delusions took over and he had violent outbursts.
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Recent Examples on the Web By Hoback’s own admission, his perception has been tweaked by his immersion in an online mire of grandiose role-playing and feverish delusion. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "Whom Is the New QAnon Docuseries For?," 21 Mar. 2021 That's because of denial and delusion, powerful psychological mechanisms that are at work in all of us. Arkansas Online, "Letters," 14 Mar. 2021 Her parents supported this delusion in their own poisonous ways. Tori Telfer, refinery29.com, "The Sordid Tale Of The Woman Who Scammed Marie-Antoinette," 24 Feb. 2021 Americans need to hear that most of the world does not share this delusion. Star Tribune, "Readers Write: Biden's inaugural speech, hopes for a Biden presidency," 22 Jan. 2021 Cataloguing other women’s gifts and comparing them to my own is a weird retrograde delusion with no utility. Jenny Singer, Glamour, "This Will be the Year I Stop Being Jealous of Other Women," 17 Jan. 2021 Between jokes, the audience is left wondering: is Wanda an unwitting participant in her delusion, or its creator? Eliana Dockterman, Time, "Wandavision Offers Hope That Originality Can Survive the Era of the Ever-Expanding Franchise," 16 Jan. 2021 Trump, claiming disenchantment, has directed his base to Newsmax and One America News, where the delusion that widespread fraud stole the election is given even freer rein. Washington Post, "Don’t buy into Trump’s disapproval of Fox News. The network is working hard on his election-denial fantasy.," 9 Dec. 2020 This is an overwhelming state of delusion that is suffered by a large portion of the populace. Curtis Silver, Forbes, "Our Virtually Connected World Will Always And Never Be Normal," 24 Feb. 2021

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for delusion

Middle English, from Late Latin delusion-, delusio, from deludere — see delude

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Learn More about delusion

Time Traveler for delusion

Time Traveler

The first known use of delusion was in the 15th century

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Statistics for delusion

Last Updated

12 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Delusion.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/delusion. Accessed 18 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for delusion

delusion

noun

English Language Learners Definition of delusion

: a belief that is not true : a false idea
: a false idea or belief that is caused by mental illness

delusion

noun
de·​lu·​sion | \ di-ˈlü-zhən How to pronounce delusion (audio) \

Kids Definition of delusion

: a false belief that continues in spite of the facts “You might be laboring under the delusion that the entire … world is impressed with you …”— J. K. Rowling, Goblet of Fire

delusion

noun
de·​lu·​sion | \ di-ˈlü-zhən How to pronounce delusion (audio) \

Medical Definition of delusion

1a : the act of deluding : the state of being deluded
b : an abnormal mental state characterized by the occurrence of psychotic delusions
2 : a false belief regarding the self or persons or objects outside the self that persists despite the facts and occurs in some psychotic states — compare hallucination sense 1, illusion sense 2a

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Comments on delusion

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