Barnum effect


the tendency to accept certain vague or worthless information as true, such as character assessments, horoscopes, or exaggerated claims
Word Origin

from Barnum & Bailey’s Circus
Usage Note



Read Also:

  • Barnum, phineas t.

    barnum, phineas t. A nineteenth-century American showman known for his circus, “The Greatest Show on Earth.” His sideshows were particularly notable, even though many of the “freaks” he advertised were hoaxes. After Barnum’s death, his circus was absorbed into the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus. Note: According to a famous story, when someone […]

  • Barnyardism

    a smutty or indecent word or expression.

  • Baro

    a combining form meaning “pressure,” used in the formation of compound words: barograph. Historical Examples baro nodded, and started up the line, reorganizing the caravan. The Players Everett B. Cole Only one bandit, a skilled swordsman, remained, to keep baro busy. The Players Everett B. Cole baro wheeled and slid down the incline, closely followed […]

  • Barocchio

    Giacomo [jah-kaw-maw] /ˈdʒɑ kɔ mɔ/ (Show IPA), Vignola, Giacomo da. noun Giacomo (ˈdʒakomo) See Vignola

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