(Sanskrit: "measuring along some other thing," or "inference"), in Indian philosophy, the second of the five means of knowledge (pramana) that enable man to have accurate cognitions. Inference occupies a central place in the Hindu school of logic (Nyaya). This school worked out a syllogism that has the form of an argument rather than a formula and that goes through five stages: (1) the proposition (pratijna, literally "promise"), (2) the ground (hetu), (3) the illustration (udaharana), (4) the application (upanaya), and (5) the conclusion (nigamana). A syllogism is vitiated by a fallacious ground; this is called hetvabhasa ("the mere appearance of a ground"). A number of types of invalid grounds are distinguished: simple error, contradiction, tautology, lack of proof for the ground, and inopportunity. See also pramana.

Learn more about anumana with a free trial on

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source
Previous Definition: anum
Next Definition: anunnaki
Words Near: anumana
More from
Synonyms and Antonyms for anumana
More from
Search for articles containing anumana
More from Translator Word FAQs presents 366 FAQs, incorporating some of the frequently asked questions from the past with newer queries.

Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature