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

Examples of post hoc in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Moreover, a myopic reliance on post hoc liability for platforms does little either to prevent abuse or to punish child abusers. Maureen Flatley, National Review, 25 Jan. 2024 Relying on chronological lists of positions held, rather than asking people to respond to a survey questioning them about their experiences, brings with it the risk of the logical error post hoc ergo propter hoc: afterwards, therefore because. Dr. Marlena Corcoran, Forbes, 30 Nov. 2023 All leaders, after all, think their theories, ideas, and choices are consistent, logical, and well supported—and there is rarely an objective test that can prove otherwise or that does not rely on post hoc reasoning. Foreign Affairs, 24 Oct. 2023 Seamlessly, the media–Democrat complex then dismissed the matter, with the social-media giants rationalizing post hoc that their ban on the information’s dissemination was mandated by their rules of service against the use of their platforms to abet foreign interference in American elections. Andrew C. McCarthy, National Review, 31 Mar. 2022 This bizarre episode reinforces the impression that all involved were engaged in a political scheme to provide a post hoc rationale for Trump’s tweets—a scheme that very obviously risked interfering with, and potentially obstructing, a federal criminal investigation. Murray Waas, The New York Review of Books, 17 Aug. 2020 Many of the posts online cite no evidence except that the person who died had been vaccinated at some point in the past, using a common disinformation strategy known as post hoc fallacy, according to Jetelina. Ali Swenson and Angelo Fichera, Anchorage Daily News, 4 Feb. 2023 Recently, the algorithm was used to analyze post hoc the resulting workload for a single human deploying a heterogeneous robot swarm in an urban environment. IEEE Spectrum, 21 Aug. 2022 Hines also criticizes the logic of trying to 'explain' Einstein's mind from his neuroanatomy, post hoc. Neuroskeptic, Discover Magazine, 25 May 2014

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'post hoc.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


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

First Known Use

1704, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of post hoc was in 1704

Dictionary Entries Near post hoc

Cite this Entry

“Post hoc.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/post%20hoc. Accessed 20 Jul. 2024.

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