gull·​ible | \ ˈgə-lə-bəl How to pronounce gullible (audio) \
variants: or less commonly gullable

Definition of gullible

: easily duped or cheated selling overpriced souvenirs to gullible tourists

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Other Words from gullible

gullibility \ ˌgə-​lə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce gullible (audio) \ noun
gullibly \ ˈgə-​lə-​blē How to pronounce gullible (audio) \ adverb

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Don't fall for anyone who tries to convince you that gullible isn't entered in the dictionary. It's right here, along with the run-on entries gullibility and gullibly. All three words descend from the verb gull, meaning "to deceive or take advantage of." The verb was borrowed into English from Anglo-French in the mid-16th century. Another relative is the noun gull, referring to a person who is easy to cheat—a word which is unrelated to the familiar word for a seabird, which is of Celtic origin.

Examples of gullible in a Sentence

I'm not gullible enough to believe something that outrageous. They sell overpriced souvenirs to gullible tourists.
Recent Examples on the Web This assumes that investors and VCs are gullible and can be deceived by the appearance of success. Dileep Rao, Forbes, 15 Sep. 2021 And, these contrarians are not waiting for the completion of confirmatory studies to disseminate their advice to the gullible minions to take ivermectin off-label, even if doing so may endanger lives. Joshua Cohen, Forbes, 29 Aug. 2021 Most cars do, but a few will use the still-available free lane to zoom ahead and scoot in in front of the polite (or gullible) drivers. Washington Post, 28 June 2021 The court has dismissed the idea of using naivete or being gullible as a defense, KPIX reports. CBS News, 1 Sep. 2021 The court also dismissed the idea of using naivete or being gullible as a defense, according to a court order. Sara Ashley O'brien, CNN, 30 Aug. 2021 Framed by set designer Beowulf Boritt’s realistic storefronts of a laundromat, health clinic and Senegalese hair-braiding salon, Ming-Trent and 16 other actors lead us giddily through a farce of savvy wives, gullible suitors and scheming lovers. Washington Post, 15 Aug. 2021 Although academe may dismiss the Galileo Project as nothing more than pandering to a gullible public, such prejudice is unhelpful and myopic. Seth Shostak, Scientific American, 29 July 2021 Romantic entanglement ensues with a young, pre-Sulu George Takei playing a police captain intent on untangling an espionage operation that exists entirely in the overheated imagination of a gullible KGB agent. Kevin Crust, Los Angeles Times, 20 July 2021

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

1818, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for gullible

see gull entry 2

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Time Traveler for gullible

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The first known use of gullible was in 1818

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Dictionary Entries Near gullible

gull gray



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Last Updated

7 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Gullible.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for gullible



English Language Learners Definition of gullible

: easily fooled or cheated especially : quick to believe something that is not true


gull·​ible | \ ˈgə-lə-bəl How to pronounce gullible (audio) \

Kids Definition of gullible

: easily fooled or cheated

More from Merriam-Webster on gullible

Nglish: Translation of gullible for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of gullible for Arabic Speakers


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