post hoc

\ ˈpōst-ˈhäk How to pronounce post hoc (audio) \

Definition of post hoc

1 : relating to or being the fallacy of arguing from temporal sequence to a causal relation
2 : formulated after the fact a post hoc rationalization

Examples of post hoc in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But restricting these post hoc rationalizations serve important values, Chief Justice Roberts wrote. Henry Gass, The Christian Science Monitor, "How rule of law saved DACA, for now," 19 June 2020 In a hyperpolarized system such as ours (as opposed to a European parliamentary government), what seem to be inevitable political coalitions are just as often post hoc frameworks grafted on top of marriages of convenience. Thomas Chatterton Williams, Harper's magazine, "An Incoherent Truth," 20 Jan. 2020 Lowell’s eventual return to Hardwick, and his almost shamed gratitude to her for permitting him to come back to a life led in common, put a post hoc frame around the dramatic vicissitudes and fantasies of the flight to Blackwood. Helen Vendler, Harper's magazine, "Dearest Lizzie," 20 Jan. 2020 One thing both sides seems to agree on is that omission amounts to punishment, a post hoc retraction of playing-day success. New York Times, "For Some Players, Not Reaching the Hall Just Brings More Fame," 20 July 2019 Our cancel culture relies on the unpredictability and post hoc nature of the enforcement to instill a spirit of creative and preemptive conformity among those with something to lose. Michael Brendan Dougherty, National Review, "Pavlik Morozov Is the Patron Saint of Cancel Culture," 2 July 2019 But these, deCervo likes to point out, are post hoc variables. Zach Schonbrun, New York Times, "How Do Athletes’ Brains Control Their Movements?," 13 Apr. 2018 But to arbitrarily impose a post hoc analysis after voters have seen such a person run a campaign is not right. Michael Smerconish,, "President Trump's mental health: Public debate is 'unfair and unseemly' | Michael Smerconish," 8 Jan. 2018 There is something called a post hoc fallacy in logic, which says that because one thing happened, a second development is erroneously thought to be directly caused by it. Bill Livingston,, "Ohio State Buckeyes, Cleveland Browns, Brian Hartline and yardsticks: Bill Livingston (photos, video)," 31 Oct. 2017

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

1704, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for post hoc

New Latin post hoc, ergo propter hoc after this, therefore because of this

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Time Traveler for post hoc

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The first known use of post hoc was in 1704

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Cite this Entry

“Post hoc.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Mar. 2021.

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