Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

  

English definition of “red herring”

red herring

noun [C]    
a fact, idea, or subject that takes people's attention away from the central point being considered: The police investigated many clues, but they were all red herrings.IrrelevantConfusion, confusing and feeling confused
(Definition of red herring noun from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
Focus on the pronunciation of red herring

Definitions of “red herring” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

sail

When a boat or a ship sails, it travels on the water.

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More