devil's advocate

noun

Definition of devil's advocate

  1. 1 :  a Roman Catholic official whose duty is to examine critically the evidence on which a demand for beatification or canonization rests

  2. 2 :  a person who champions the less accepted cause for the sake of argument

Examples of devil's advocate in a sentence

  1. Teachers often play devil's advocate to provoke discussion in the classroom.

Origin and Etymology of devil's advocate

translation of New Latin advocatus diaboli


First Known Use: 1760


DEVIL'S ADVOCATE Defined for English Language Learners

devil's advocate

noun

Definition of devil's advocate for English Language Learners

  • : a person who expresses an opinion that disagrees with others so that there will be an interesting discussion about some issue


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