Definition of devil's advocate in English:

devil's advocate

Syllabification: dev·il's ad·vo·cate


  • 1A person who expresses a contentious opinion in order to provoke debate or test the strength of the opposing arguments: the interviewer will need to play devil’s advocate to put the other side’s case forward
    More example sentences
    • When the shopkeeper gave her fruits and vegetables in a paper cover, the officer tried to play the devil's advocate and provoke the seller asking him if it would not be more easy to give it in a plastic cover.
    • What elevates The Making of Henry, what will crush the arguments of the devil's advocate, is the way it talks about love.
    • So let's just say for the sake of argument, playing devil's advocate here, that it's hard to meet people.
  • 1.1 historical The popular title of the person appointed by the Roman Catholic Church to challenge a proposed beatification or canonization, or the verification of a miracle.
    More example sentences
    • I like the idea, found in the Western church, of the devil's advocate.
    • The devil's advocates, unlike the admiring artists who did their part to insure for Joan a different kind of immortality, understood her changeability and its implications.
    • Of all those who have tried to understand Joan's life and career, it is only the devil's advocates who have focused in a concerted way on Joan's inconsistencies and erratic behavior.

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