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hypothetical

[hahy-puh-thet-i-kuh l] /ˌhaɪ pəˈθɛt ɪ kəl/
adjective, Also, hypothetic (for defs 1–4).
1.
assumed by hypothesis; supposed:
a hypothetical case.
2.
of, pertaining to, involving, or characterized by hypothesis:
hypothetical reasoning.
3.
given to making hypotheses.
4.
Logic.
  1. (of a proposition) highly conjectural; not well supported by available evidence.
  2. (of a proposition or syllogism) conditional.
noun
5.
a hypothetical situation, instance, etc.:
The Secretary of Defense refused to discuss hypotheticals with the reporters.
Origin
1580-1590
1580-90; < Greek hypothetik(ós) supposed (hypo- hypo- + the- put (base of tithénai to put, do1) + -tikos -tic) + -al1
Related forms
hypothetically, adverb
unhypothetical, adjective
unhypothetically, adverb
Synonyms
1. suppositional, theoretical, speculative.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for hypothetical
  • The narratives detail, step by step, how students should approach research and writing for hypothetical papers.
  • Thank you for answering my hypothetical question.
  • Hooper poses outrageous hypothetical questions.
  • The great power of this principle of selection is not hypothetical.
  • This is not a hypothetical discussion.
  • They'll then be given four hypothetical scenarios and will search for maps to use in each one.
  • Ask students to draw two hypothetical satellite images for each location depicting the two possible scenarios they have described.
  • Now this hypothetical liberty is universally allowed to belong to every one who is not a prisoner and in chains.
  • But for now, scientists say, the benefits remain hypothetical and elusive.
  • You're talking about a hypothetical that will never occur.
British Dictionary definitions for hypothetical

hypothetical

/ˌhaɪpəˈθɛtɪkəl/
adjective
1.
having the nature of a hypothesis
2.
assumed or thought to exist
3.
(logic) another word for conditional (sense 4)
4.
existing only as an idea or concept: a time machine is a hypothetical device
Derived Forms
hypothetically, adverb
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 hypothetical
adj.

1580s, from Greek hypothetikos "pertaining to a hypothesis," from hypothesis (see hypothesis). Related: Hypothetically; hypothetic.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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