a strong likelihood or chance of something: The probability of the book's success makes us optimistic.

a probable event, circumstance, etc.: Our going to China is a probability.

Statistics.

the relative possibility that an event will occur, as expressed by the ratio of the number of actual occurrences to the total number of possible occurrences.

the relative frequency with which an event occurs or is likely to occur.

Idioms

in all probability, very probably; quite likely: The factory will in all probability be relocated.

Origin of probability

From the Latin word probābilitās, dating back to 1545–55. See probable, -ity

Related formsnon·prob·a·bil·i·ty, noun,pluralnon·prob·a·bil·i·ties.su·per·prob·a·bil·i·ty, noun,pluralsu·per·prob·a·bil·i·ties.

statisticsa measure or estimate of the degree of confidence one may have in the occurrence of an event, measured on a scale from zero (impossibility) to one (certainty). It may be defined as the proportion of favourable outcomes to the total number of possibilities if these are indifferent (mathematical probability), or the proportion observed in a sample (empirical probability), or the limit of this as the sample size tends to infinity (relative frequency), or by more subjective criteria (subjective probability)

mid-15c., "quality of being probable," from Old French probabilite (14c.) and directly from Latin probabilitatem (nominative probabilitas) "credibility, probability," from probabilis (see probable). Meaning "something likely to be true" is from 1570s; mathematical sense is from 1718.

A number expressing the likelihood of the occurrence of a given event, especially a fraction expressing how many times the event will happen in a given number of tests or experiments. For example, when rolling a six-sided die, the probability of rolling a particular side is 1 in 6, or 16.

A number between zero and one that shows how likely a certain event is. Usually, probability is expressed as a ratio: the number of experimental results that would produce the event divided by the number of experimental results considered possible. Thus, the probability of drawing the ten of clubs from an ordinary deck of cards is one in fifty-two (1:52), or one fifty-second.