- the faculty or power of acquiring intellectual knowledge, either by direct understanding of first principles or by argument.
- the power of intelligent and dispassionate thought, or of conduct influenced by such thought.
- Kantianism.the faculty by which the ideas of pure reason are created.
verb (used without object)
verb (used with object)
- rearview mirror,
- reason, age of,
Origin of reason
A similar charge of redundancy is made against the reason why, which is also a well-established idiom: The reason why the bill failed to pass was the defection of three key senators.
Word Origin for reason
early 14c., resunmen, "to question (someone)," also "to challenge," from Old French raisoner "speak, discuss; argue; address; speak to," from Late Latin rationare "to discourse," from ratio (see reason (n.)). Intransitive sense of "to think in a logical manner" is from 1590s; transitive sense of "employ reasoning (with someone)" is from 1847. Related: Reasoned; reasoning.
c.1200, "intellectual faculty that adopts actions to ends," also "statement in an argument, statement of explanation or justification," from Anglo-French resoun, Old French raison "course; matter; subject; language, speech; thought, opinion," from Latin rationem (nominative ratio) "reckoning, understanding, motive, cause," from ratus, past participle of reri "to reckon, think," from PIE root *re(i)- "to reason, count" (cf. Old English rædan "to advise; see read (v.)).
Meaning "sanity; degree of intelligence that distinguishes men from brutes" is recorded from late 13c. Sense of "grounds for action, motive, cause of an event" is from c.1300. Middle English sense of "meaning, signification" (early 14c.) is in the phrase rhyme or reason. Phrase it stands to reason is from 1630s. Age of Reason "the Enlightenment" is first recorded 1794, as the title of Tom Paine's book.
by reason of
Because of, owing to, as in By reason of a crop failure, the price of coffee is bound to rise. This expression is considered quite formal today. [c. 1300]
see by reason of; in reason; it stands to reason; listen to reason; lose one's mind (reason); rhyme or reason; see reason; stand to reason; with reason.