credophile

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Coined by L. Sprague de Camp from Latin credo (I believe) + -phile (liker, lover).

First known use is in a personal letter from de Camp to James Randi (which is thought to still exist in Randi's archives but is not readily available for study).

The word "credophile" and the adjective form "credophilic" were used by L. Sprague de Camp at least as early as 1952 in "Lands Beyond" which he co-authored with Willie Ley (De Camp, L. Sprague & Willie Ley. Lands Beyond. NY: Rinehart, 1952, pp. 268, 272

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

credophile (plural credophiles)

  1. One who gets positive pleasure from belief and pain from doubt; one who collects beliefs not for utility but for glitter and for whom, once he or she has embraced a belief, it takes something more than mere disproof to make to let go.
  2. One who is especially gullible.
    • 2007, Christopher Brookmyre, Attack of the Unsinkable Rubber Ducks, →ISBN, page 203:
      The mere advent of the Spiritual Science Chair seemed to have been received as a beacon of opportunity for all manner of credophiles, so I guessed, rightly, that Miriam would come a-running if I dangled the prospect of an alternative analysis of the efficacy of homeopathic remedies.