soph·​o·​mor·​ic | \ ˌsäf-ˈmȯr-ik How to pronounce sophomoric (audio) , -ˈmär- also ˌsȯf- or ˌsä-fə- or ˌsȯ-fə-\

Definition of sophomoric

1 : conceited and overconfident of knowledge but poorly informed and immature a sophomoric argument
2 : lacking in maturity, taste, or judgment sophomoric humor

Keep scrolling for more

Did You Know?

Sophomores get a bad rap. A lot of people seem to think they're foolish (no matter what they do), when they know they're pretty wise. The history of the words sophomore and sophomoric (which developed from sophomore) proves that it has always been tough to be a sophomore. Those words probably come from a combination of the Greek terms sophos (which means "wise") and mōros (which means "foolish"). But sophomores can take comfort in the fact that some very impressive words, including philosopher and sophisticated, are also related to sophos.

Examples of sophomoric in a Sentence

His behavior at the party was sophomoric.

Recent Examples on the Web

The town is filled with stereotypical athleisure-wearing moms whose conversations border on the sophomoric. Mary Cadden, USA TODAY, "'Prada' sequel moves to Greenwich, Conn., bland land of athleisure wear," 5 June 2018 The book is still a sophomoric mess, and the 17 songs, which are mostly either fast or rather less so, are lively but unvaried. Terry Teachout, WSJ, "‘Straight White Men’ and ‘Head Over Heels’ Reviews: All Identity, All the Time," 26 July 2018 The story centers on the Bottom brothers (yes, their surname is key to a sophomoric joke or two), 16th-century playwrights who struggle to create a hit under the shadow of William Shakespeare, who’s adored like a rock god. Matthew J. Palm,, "As 'Something Rotten!' says, 'Nothing's as amazing as a musical'," 25 Apr. 2018 And the tone of his musings sometimes was, to be blunt, sophomoric. Matt Viser,, "Sophomoric and substantial: The college journalism career of James Comey," 9 Apr. 2018 Less sophomoric minds prevailed, though, and Bauer ended up filing at $6,525,000. Dan Gartland,, "Trevor Bauer Is Making the World’s First Charitable 69 Joke," 28 Mar. 2018 But in choosing another actor the studio may want to do a better job of excavating the online pasts of young performers who came to prominence by posting callow or sophomoric videos of themselves on YouTube and social-media platforms. Maria Puente, USA TODAY, "Fox fires 'Hate U Give' actor after video of him using N-word surfaces," 6 Feb. 2018 Once Animal House became the top-grossing comedy in history in 1978, that was the version of National Lampoon that got copied over and over, with an emphasis on sophomoric rather than subversive. Benjamin Wallace, HWD, "Can Anyone Repair National Lampoon’s Devastated Brand?," 1 May 2017 But the trial’s depiction of the way that Albany operates — with bullying, back-room deals and sophomoric nicknames, has not been flattering. Jesse Mckinley And Vivian Wang, New York Times, "Defense Rests Its Case in Major New York Corruption Trial," 26 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sophomoric.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of sophomoric

1813, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for sophomoric



English Language Learners Definition of sophomoric

US, disapproving : having or showing a lack of emotional maturity : foolish and immature

More from Merriam-Webster on sophomoric

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sophomoric

Nglish: Translation of sophomoric for Spanish Speakers

Comments on sophomoric

What made you want to look up sophomoric? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


standardized text or formulaic language

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Finance Words Quiz

  • a-piggy-bank
  • The etymology of mortgage is related most closely to which two words?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!