hoax

verb
\ˈhōks \
hoaxed; hoaxing; hoaxes

Definition of hoax 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

: to trick into believing or accepting as genuine something false and often preposterous were hoaxed by the website

hoax

noun

Definition of hoax (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act intended to trick or dupe : imposture the victim of a cruel hoax assumed the bomb threat was just a hoax

2 : something accepted or established by fraud or fabrication believes the Loch Ness Monster is a hoax a literary hoax

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Other Words from hoax

Verb

hoaxer noun

Examples of hoax in a Sentence

Verb

a skilled forger who hoaxed the art world into believing that the paintings were long-lost Vermeers

Noun

The bomb threat is probably a hoax, but we should still evacuate the building. She was the victim of a cruel hoax.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The effort, dubbed #ThinkBeforeYouPost, reminds would-be pranksters that hoax threats are not a joke and could result in federal or state charges. Karen Kucher, sandiegouniontribune.com, "FBI launches campaign to 'think before you post' hoax threats," 10 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The city’s lawyer argued that the rape was a hoax and therefore that the police acted appropriately. Ruth Padawer, New York Times, "Should Statutes of Limitations for Rape Be Abolished?," 19 June 2018 Luksta said of the former Chicago Tribune sportswriter who actually broke the story of Maguire’s hoax in 1974. Andrew Joseph, For The Win, "How Loyola inspired an epic NCAA hoax: Inside Maguire University's party at the Final Four," 2 Apr. 2018 The move is meant to help prevent hastily recorded hoax videos from rising to the top of YouTube’s recommendations. Issie Lapowsky, WIRED, "YouTube Debuts Plan to Promote and Fund 'Authoritative' News," 9 July 2018 Apparently, the Russian election-meddling wasn’t a hoax after all. Paul Daugherty, Cincinnati.com, "Doc: Xavier Musketeers, UC Bearcats take their lumps. Now what?," 19 Feb. 2018 But skeptics say the game is likely a hoax meant to scare parents. Megan Friedman, Good Housekeeping, "Parents Say Their 15-Year-Old Died Because of the Online "Blue Whale Challenge"," 13 July 2017 But there was another, major thread in the comments: Is the flight attendant story true or a hoax? Dawn Gilbertson, azcentral, "Did a flight attendant see 16 migrant children on a flight from Phoenix to Miami?," 19 June 2018 Barriss also is charged with making false reports and hoaxes, cyberstalking, making interstate threats, making interstate threats to harm by fire and wire fraud. Roxana Hegemen, Cincinnati.com, "Local gamer pleads not guilty in 'swatting' death," 14 June 2018 Barriss also is charged with making false reports and hoaxes, cyberstalking, making interstate threats, making interstate threats to harm by fire and wire fraud. Washington Post, "2 gamers plead not guilty in Kansas ‘swatting’ death," 13 June 2018

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

Verb

circa 1796, in the meaning defined above

Noun

1808, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hoax

Verb

probably contraction of hocus

Noun

see hoax entry 1

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Learn More about hoax

Dictionary Entries near hoax

hoary willow

hoast

hoatzin

hoax

hob

hob and nob

Hobart

Statistics for hoax

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for hoax

The first known use of hoax was circa 1796

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More Definitions for hoax

hoax

verb

English Language Learners Definition of hoax

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to trick or deceive (someone)

hoax

noun

English Language Learners Definition of hoax (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act that is meant to trick or deceive people

hoax

verb
\ˈhōks \
hoaxed; hoaxing

Kids Definition of hoax

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to trick into thinking something is true or real when it isn't

hoax

noun

Kids Definition of hoax (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act meant to fool or deceive

2 : something false passed off as real

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Comments on hoax

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