Also found in: Thesaurus, Legal, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
dem·a·goguealso dem·a·gog (dĕm′ə-gôg′, -gŏg′)
1. A leader who obtains power by means of impassioned appeals to the emotions and prejudices of the populace.
2. A leader of the common people in ancient times.
v. dem·a·gogued, dem·a·gogu·ing, dem·a·gogues also dem·a·goged , dem·a·go·ging , dem·a·goges
Usage Problem To speak about (an issue, for example) in the manner of a demagogue.
Usage Problem To speak in the manner of a demagogue.
[Greek dēmagōgos, popular leader : dēmos, people; see dā- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots + agōgos, leading (from agein, to lead; see ag- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots).]
Usage Note: Even though demagogue has been used as a verb meaning "to speak about something with the tactics of a demagogue" since the 1600s, the verb has kept a low profile in the language. The Usage Panel does not view the verb with much favor in either its transitive or intransitive use. In our 2016 survey, between 85 and 89 percent of the Usage Panel rejected it in a range of intransitive and transitive examples. These results are only slightly more favorable than when this issue was last balloted, nearly two decades earlier. Perhaps this continued resistance should not be surprising, since the use of familiar nouns as verbs is often the subject of complaints.
1. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) a political agitator who appeals with crude oratory to the prejudice and passions of the mob
2. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) (esp in the ancient world) any popular political leader or orator
[C17: from Greek dēmagōgos people's leader, from dēmos people + agein to lead]
or dem•a•gog(ˈdɛm əˌgɒg, -ˌgɔg)
n., v. -gogued, -gogu•ing. n.
1. a person, esp. a political leader, who gains power by arousing people's emotions and prejudices.
2. (in ancient times) a leader of the people.v.i.
3. to speak or act like a demagogue.
[1640–50; < Greek dēmagōgós=dêm(os) people + agōgós guiding]
A person who gains the support of the public by making impassioned speeches that appeal to their emotions and prejudices.
Switch to new thesaurus
|Noun||1.||demagogue - a political leader who seeks support by appealing to popular passions and prejudices|