Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Weird Word Wednesday
noun dem·a·gogue \ˈde-mə-ˌgäg\
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Simple Definition of demagogue
: a political leader who tries to get support by making false claims and promises and using arguments based on emotion rather than reason
When the ancient Greeks used dēmagōgos (from dēmos, meaning "people," and agein, "to lead") they meant someone good-a leader who used outstanding oratorical skills to further the interests of the common people. Mid-17th-century writers such as Thomas Hobbes and John Dryden-and, later, Jonathan Swift-employed the English word that way. But, at the same time, the word took a negative turn, coming to suggest one who uses powers of persuasion to sway and mislead.
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