[ hahy-puh-thet-i-kuhl ]
/ ˌhaɪ pəˈθɛt ɪ kəl /

adjective Also hy·po·thet·ic (for defs 1–4).

assumed by hypothesis; supposed: a hypothetical case.
of, pertaining to, involving, or characterized by hypothesis: hypothetical reasoning.
given to making hypotheses.
  1. (of a proposition) highly conjectural; not well supported by available evidence.
  2. (of a proposition or syllogism) conditional.


a hypothetical situation, instance, etc.: The Secretary of Defense refused to discuss hypotheticals with the reporters.

Origin of hypothetical

1580–90; < Greek hypothetik(ós) supposed (hypo- hypo- + the- put (base of tithénai to put, do1) + -tikos -tic) + -al1

OTHER WORDS FROM hypothetical

hy·po·thet·i·cal·ly, adverbun·hy·po·thet·i·cal, adjectiveun·hy·po·thet·i·cal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Examples from the Web for hypothetical

British Dictionary definitions for hypothetical



/ (ˌhaɪpəˈθɛtɪkəl) /


having the nature of a hypothesis
assumed or thought to exist
logic another word for conditional (def. 4)
existing only as an idea or concepta time machine is a hypothetical device

Derived forms of hypothetical

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