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hoax (noun) a trick; a practical joke.
When you play a hoax, you trick people into believing something which is not true, especially something unpleasant. A bomb hoax, for example, is an attempt to make people believe that there is a bomb where there is none, and thus to frighten them. A phone call warning people about a false danger is an example of a hoax.
- Charles never expected that his hoax would land him in trouble. Just for a joke, he propagated the news that his friend had died and the friend sued him for damages for the falsehood.
- The Loch Ness Monster is one of the biggest hoaxes in the history of natural science. People had for long believed that a monster of the prehistoric times made its appearance now and then in Loch Ness.