- 1 (pretension to) A claim or assertion of a claim to something: his pretensions to the imperial inheritance [mass noun]: all that we cannot tolerate is pretension to infallibilityMore example sentences
- Another reaction to our new scientific powers is what I will call the Malthusian Pretension - that is, the pretension to the ability to predict mankind's limitations.
- Intelligence's pretension to being objective is a hoax because those parts of it that do not reconfirm the power structure's interests and predetermined policies are ignored and discarded.
- As a result, the pretension to universality is all the more justified as researchers find themselves working in decontextualized and highly formalized fields.
- 1.1 (often pretensions) A claim or aspiration to a particular quality: another ageing rocker with literary pretensionsMore example sentences
- Maybe I'll throw my literary pretensions out of the window for a while and try hurling a few oddly-shaped shards of prose in your direction.
- Preferably female and extremely annoying, with literary pretensions.
- The important thing is that no one with literary pretensions should be allowed near the project!
- 2 [mass noun] The use of affectation to impress; pretentiousness: he spoke simply, without pretensionMore example sentences
pretentiousness, affectation, affectedness, ostentation, ostentatiousness, artificiality, attitudinizing, airs, posing, posturing, showing off, hypocrisy, snobbery, show, flashiness; pomposity, pompousness, floweriness, grandiosity, grandness, grandiloquence, magniloquence, elaborateness, extravagance, heroics, flamboyance, ornateness, bombast, turgidity, rhetoric, pedantry• informal la-di-daBritish • informal sideAustralian/New Zealand • informal guyver
- He has staked out his claim for being a great critic through portentousness, pomposity, and extravagant pretension, and, from all appearances, seems to have achieved it.
- Its very simplicity serves as a correction to the elaborate artifice and pretension - most of it hollow - that pervade current dance-making.
- When she is there with you, she is simply there, with no pretension, no elaboration, no show.
late Middle English: from medieval Latin praetensio(n-), from praetens- 'alleged', from the verb praetendere (see pretend).