[ pri-zuhmp-tiv ]
/ prɪˈzʌmp tɪv /


affording ground for presumption: presumptive evidence.
based on likelihood or presumption: a presumptive title; the presumptive nominee.
regarded as such by presumption; based on inference.
Embryology. pertaining to the part of an embryo that, in the course of normal development, will predictably become a particular structure or region.

Nearby words

  1. presumption,
  2. presumption of fact,
  3. presumption of innocence,
  4. presumption of law,
  5. presumption of survivorship,
  6. presumptive heir,
  7. presumptuous,
  8. presuppose,
  9. presupposition,
  10. presuppurative

Origin of presumptive

From the Late Latin word praesūmptīvus, dating back to 1555–65. See presumption, -ive

Related forms
Can be confusedpresumptive presumptuous Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for presumptive

British Dictionary definitions for presumptive


/ (prɪˈzʌmptɪv) /


based on presumption or probability
affording reasonable ground for belief
of or relating to embryonic tissues that become differentiated into a particular tissue or organpresumptive epidermis
Derived Formspresumptively, adverbpresumptiveness, noun

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

Word Origin and History for presumptive



"speculative," mid-15c., from French présomptif (15c.), from Medieval Latin presumptivus, from Late Latin praesumptivus, from Latin praesumpt- past participle stem of praesumere (see presume). The heir presumptive (1620s) is "presumed" to be the heir if the heir apparent is unavailable. Related: Presumptively.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper