Shortened from the Latin expression argumentum ad hominem, argument at the person. From argumentum (meaning "argument") + ad (meaning "to" or "at") + hominem, the accusative singular of homo (meaning "man"). It can also mean attacking the messenger.
ad hominem (plural ad hominems)
- A fallacious objection to an argument or factual claim by appealing to a characteristic or belief of the person making the argument or claim, rather than by addressing the substance of the argument or producing evidence against the claim; an attempt to argue against an opponent's idea by discrediting the opponent himself.
- A personal attack.
- Of or relating to ad hominem.
- Well that's an ad hominem argument.
- In an ad hominem manner.
- He tried to make his case by arguing ad hominem.