a. One skilled in elaborate and devious argumentation.
b. A scholar or thinker.
2. Sophist Any of a group of professional fifth-century BC Greek philosophers and teachers who speculated on theology, metaphysics, and the sciences, and who were later characterized by Plato as superficial manipulators of rhetoric and dialectic.
[Middle English sophiste, from Latin sophista, from Greek sophistēs, from sophizesthai, to become wise, from sophos, clever.]
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