hypothesis[hī pät̸h′ə sis, hi-]
A hypothesis is a theory.
An example of hypothesis is the theory of evolution.
Origin of hypothesisClassical Greek groundwork, foundation, supposition ; from hypotithenai, to place under ; from hypo-, under + tithenai, to place: see hypo- and amp; do
- A tentative explanation for an observation, phenomenon, or scientific problem that can be tested by further investigation.
- Something taken to be true for the purpose of argument or investigation; an assumption.
- The antecedent of a conditional statement.
Origin of hypothesisLatin, subject for a speech, from Greek hupothesis, proposal, supposition, from hupotithenai, hupothe-, to suppose : hupo-, hypo- + tithenai, to place; see dhē- in Indo-European roots.
- (sciences) Used loosely, a tentative conjecture explaining an observation, phenomenon or scientific problem that can be tested by further observation, investigation and/or experimentation. As a scientific term of art, see the attached quotation. Compare to theory, and quotation given there.
- (general) An assumption taken to be true for the purpose of argument or investigation.
- (grammar) The antecedent of a conditional statement.
Recorded since 1596, from Middle French hypothese, from Late Latin hypothesis, from Ancient Greek ὑπόθεσις (hupothesis, “base, basis of an argument, supposition”), literally “a placing under”, itself from ὑποτίθημι (hupotithēmi, “I set before, suggest”), from ὑπό (upo, “below”) + τίθημι (tithēmi, “I put, place”).