I'm searching for an adjective to describe someone who emphatically makes claims without sufficient knowledge or factual basis. Someone who essentially sounds like or plays the expert, without the expertise. Could be a noun as well maybe?

  • EX: I can't help but question his statements, despite his (conclusive) bravado.
  • EX: I can't help but question his statements, he is a (blank)
  • EX: I can't help but question his statements, he is by reputation (inarguable).

I thought of these not sure...

  • assertive
  • indisputable
  • unarguable
  • conclusive
  • vehement
  • #1 and #2 seem to be looking for opposite words or phrases.
    – TRomano
    Mar 7, 2019 at 21:38
  • 1
    "Bloviate" is informal, but it implies a skepticism about the usefulness of the speaker's output (or bloviation).
    – user888379
    Mar 7, 2019 at 22:02
  • It's unclear what you're asking. Who is speaking in your examples, the bloviator or the unbiased critic?
    – Hot Licks
    Mar 7, 2019 at 22:40
  • 1
    One common phrase that you could use if you were quite sure that the person actually knows nothing about the subject is that they are "full of it". "it" may also be replaced with "hot air", "crap", "bull" etc. But this doesn't really fit with your examples at all.
    – Hellion
    Mar 7, 2019 at 22:57
  • 1
    Demagogue. Rabble-rouser.
    – Rusty Core
    Mar 8, 2019 at 18:06

7 Answers 7


How about the word ultracrepidarian.

someone who has no special knowledge of a subject but who expresses an opinion about it

"I avoid commenting on football for fear of being called an ultracrepidarian."

You can find this word in following on-line dictionaries: Merriam Webster, Cambridge, and Oxford.

You may also want to consider the word sophist.

A person who reasons with clever but false arguments.

"Some Sophists never mind taking help of ipse dixit."

Link to this word on Merriam Webster and Oxford

  • A typical sophist, unlike the kind of person that the OP has in mind, has a great deal of knowledge of the subject matter he is talking about; it is that knowledge that enables him to deliberately and cleverly make misleading arguments.
    – jsw29
    Mar 9, 2019 at 2:32
  • Ultracrepidarian may be, in some way, an apt word to use for such a person, but is unlikely to facilitate the comprehension of whatever point one is trying to make about that person. Its use may be somewhat amusing, but only to those who are familiar with the Latin proverb on which it is based.
    – jsw29
    Mar 9, 2019 at 2:39
  • @jsw29 The meaning of Sophist that you are referring to is the etymological in nature. Whereas, I disagree to your assertion about the word Ultracrepidarian. Or better, if you can provide your insight on the word Ultracrepidarian and enlighten us.
    – Ubi.B
    Mar 9, 2019 at 3:19
  • The word ultracrepidarian embodies an allusion to the saying 'ne sutor ultra crepidam', which means 'let a sandal-maker not go beyond sandals', or, rendered more freely, 'a shoemaker should not pronounce judgments on the matters other than those involving shoes'. The word was invented at the time when most educated people could be presumed to be familiar with such Latin proverbs and so readily 'get' the allusion. Apart from the proverb, it would be very puzzling how this word ('beyond sandals') could have this meaning.
    – jsw29
    Mar 9, 2019 at 18:05
  • @jsw29 check those links l have provided. Specifically thar of Cambridge and oxford. This word has a definite meaning now. Again, you are referring to etymological meaning.
    – Ubi.B
    Mar 9, 2019 at 18:12

As in:

I can't help but question his brazen statements.

brazen Vocabulary.com

unrestrained by convention or propriety


They are opinionated:

firmly or unduly adhering to one's own opinion or to preconceived notions
Merriam Webster

An opinion doesn't have to be factual in the least (although sometimes it is).


I can't stand his self-righteous statements. His rant and tirade are too familiar.


A term denoting precisely such a person, that would be readily understood by most English speakers, is know-it-all. In British English, its variant know-all is also available. The term is inherently ironic: it means that the person does not, in fact, know very much, let alone 'all', but merely behaves as if he does.

The term ultracrepidarian, proposed in another answer, has roughly the same denotation, but is probably known to less than 1% of educated English speakers. The choice between the two thus depends on whether one is trying to impress the audience by the richness of one's vocabulary or merely move the communication along smoothly; for the latter purpose know-it-all is preferable.


The examples are of someone who speaks "authoritatively", but not necessarily accurately or knowledgeably.



Since you are willing to accept a noun, I think you could use pundit or punditry here.

I question his statements, despite his punditry.

I question his statements, he is merely a pundit.

I question his statements, he is by reputation a mere pundit.

It need not mean "expert". You need only act like an expert to be a pundit.

M-W: "a person who gives opinions in an authoritative manner usually through the mass media"

Compare: Pundit: From a wise person to an opinionated person.

  • Sorry to DV, but pundit or pandit don't pretend to be an expert, but they are really an expert. EOLD en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/pundit
    – Ubi.B
    Mar 8, 2019 at 16:48
  • @ubi hatt: Your understanding of the word pundit may be colored by its origin. The word pundit can have negative connotations in contemporary English (at least contemporary American English) where the word is often used as if it were surrounded by "scare-quotes". That is not to say that there are not real experts, but when someone is called a pundit here it does not necessarily mean that the speaker thinks they are an expert. Many pundits are simply spin-meisters.
    – TRomano
    Mar 8, 2019 at 17:01
  • Well M-W doesn't say anything about "being pretentious". It simply says, a person who presents his/her opinion. That does not qualify "pudit" to be expert without knowledge.
    – Ubi.B
    Mar 8, 2019 at 17:11
  • See the link I added to the answer.
    – TRomano
    Mar 8, 2019 at 17:12

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