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[bey-sis] /ˈbeɪ sɪs/
noun, plural bases
[bey-seez] /ˈbeɪ siz/ (Show IPA)
the bottom or base of anything; the part on which something stands or rests.
anything upon which something is based; fundamental principle; groundwork.
the principal constituent; fundamental ingredient.
a basic fact, amount, standard, etc., used in making computations, reaching conclusions, or the like:
The nurse is paid on an hourly basis. He was chosen on the basis of his college grades.
Mathematics. a set of linearly independent elements of a given vector space having the property that every element of the space can be written as a linear combination of the elements of the set.
1525-35; < Latin < Greek básis step, place one stands on, pedestal, equivalent to ba-, base of baínein to walk, step (akin to come) + -sis -sis; cf. base1
1, 2. See base1 . Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for basis
  • On this basis he built up a philosophy which is usually regarded as the foundation of modern thought.
  • While there is some basis for this belief, it is certainly an oversimplification.
  • Earthquakes jolt the land on a regular basis, and volcanoes erupt on occasion.
  • The students and scholars are improving lives on a daily basis.
  • Biology has exactly the same hard-nosed basis as the physical sciences, consisting of the natural laws.
  • Questions will be answered on a first-come, first-serve basis.
  • Reservations are recommended, but half of the campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Knowledge is in every country the surest basis of happiness.
  • She will assume her new duties on a part-time basis immediately, as she completes previous freelance commitments.
  • The study provides a genetic basis for confirming or debunking theories .
British Dictionary definitions for basis


noun (pl) -ses (-siːz)
something that underlies, supports, or is essential to something else, esp an abstract idea
a principle on which something depends or from which something has issued
(maths) (of a vector space) a maximal set of linearly independent vectors, in terms of which all the elements of the space are uniquely expressible, and the number of which is the dimension of the space: the vectors x, y and z form a basis of the 3-dimensional space all members of which can be written as ax + by + cz
Word Origin
C14: via Latin from Greek: step, from bainein to step, go
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for basis

1570s, "bottom or foundation (of something material)," from Latin basis "foundation," from Greek basis "a step, stand, base, that whereon one stands," from bainein "go, step" (see come). Transferred and figurative senses (of immaterial things) are from c.1600.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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basis in Medicine

basis ba·sis (bā'sĭs)
n. pl. ba·ses (-sēz')
The foundation upon which something, such as an anatomical part, rests.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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basis in Science
Plural bases (bā'sēz')
A set of independent vectors whose linear combinations define a vector space, such as a reference frame used to establish a coordinate system.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Idioms and Phrases with basis
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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