probable

[prob-uh-buh l]

adjective

likely to occur or prove true: He foresaw a probable business loss. He is the probable writer of the article.
having more evidence for than against, or evidence that inclines the mind to belief but leaves some room for doubt.
affording ground for belief.

Nearby words

  1. probability density function,
  2. probability distribution,
  3. probability function,
  4. probability theory,
  5. probability wave,
  6. probable cause,
  7. probable error,
  8. probably,
  9. probacteriophage,
  10. proband

Origin of probable

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin probābilis likely, literally, capable of standing a test, equivalent to probā(re) to test (see probe) + -bilis -ble

Related formsnon·prob·a·ble, adjectivenon·prob·a·bly, adverbqua·si-prob·a·ble, adjectivequa·si-prob·a·bly, adverb

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for probable


British Dictionary definitions for probable

probable

adjective

likely to be or to happen but not necessarily so
most likelythe probable cause of the accident

noun

a person who is probably to be chosen for a team, event, etc

Word Origin for probable

C14: via Old French from Latin probābilis that may be proved, from probāre to prove

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 probable

probable

adj.

late 14c., from Old French probable "provable, demonstrable" (14c.), from Latin probabilis "worthy of approval, pleasing, agreeable, acceptable; provable, that may be assumed to be believed, credible," from probare "to try, to test" (see prove). Probable cause as a legal term is attested from 1670s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper