hyp·​o·​crit·​i·​cal | \ ˌhi-pə-ˈkri-ti-kəl How to pronounce hypocritical (audio) \

Definition of hypocritical

: characterized by behavior that contradicts what one claims to believe or feel : characterized by hypocrisy said that it was hypocritical to demand respect from students without respecting them in return a hypocritical gesture of modesty and virtue— Robert Graves also : being a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings : being a hypocrite

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Other Words from hypocritical

hypocritically \ ˌhi-​pə-​ˈkri-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce hypocritical (audio) \ adverb

Examples of hypocritical in a Sentence

it's hypocritical to say mean things behind someone's back, and then to act nice when you want something from her
Recent Examples on the Web To vote against others in a similar situation would be hypocritical. Evan Grant, Dallas News, "Who should be headed to Cooperstown? Evan Grant breaks down his own Hall of Fame ballot," 30 Dec. 2020 That makes Texas’ argument hypocritical in the view of University of Texas law professor Steve Vladeck. Todd J. Gillman, Dallas News, "Six GOP-led states join Texas bid to overturn Biden’s election, as Trump dines with Paxton and other AGs," 10 Dec. 2020 How outrageously hypocritical and ignorantly arrogant of Minneapolis City Council Member Jeremiah Ellison to impugn the character and professionalism of Police Chief Medaria Arradondo. Star Tribune, "Readers Write: Election results, polarization, Minneapolis police, the Catholic Church," 12 Nov. 2020 To cat meat and then denounce the elk hunt was hypocritical, but there was no budging him. Susan Casey, Field & Stream, "F&S Classics: An Improbable Elk Hunt," 6 Dec. 2020 Criminal law and its enforcement are notoriously hypocritical. Jed S. Rakoff, The New York Review of Books, "Getting Away With Murder," 17 Nov. 2020 Some 72 million American voters likely think that's bodaciously hypocritical. Mike Masterson, Arkansas Online, "'Sounds' good," 15 Nov. 2020 Doesn’t that sound more than a teensy bit hypocritical? Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, "Column: After denying their drivers employee status, Uber and Lyft call them ‘essential’," 15 Dec. 2020 The tradition of collegiality and the regard for norms — highlighted this year by the hypocritical rush of Republicans to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court just a week before the presidential election — have been smashed. Dan Rodricks Baltimore Sun (tns), Star Tribune, "Leadership: Today's Senate needs more people of the kind Paul Sarbanes was," 8 Dec. 2020

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

1553, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hypocritical

hypocritic "of a hypocrite" (borrowed from Medieval Latin hypocriticus, borrowed from Greek hypokritikós "of acting, skilled in rhetorical delivery," from hypokritḗs "answerer, actor on a stage" + -ikos -ic entry 1) + -al entry 1 — more at hypocrite

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Time Traveler for hypocritical

Time Traveler

The first known use of hypocritical was in 1553

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Statistics for hypocritical

Last Updated

18 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Hypocritical.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hypocritical. Accessed 21 Jan. 2021.

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