[ prob-uh-buhl ]
See synonyms for probable on
  1. likely to occur or prove true: He foresaw a probable business loss. He is the probable writer of the article.

  2. having more evidence for than against, or evidence that inclines the mind to belief but leaves some room for doubt.

  1. affording ground for belief.

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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

Other words from probable

  • non·prob·a·ble, adjective
  • non·prob·a·bly, adverb
  • qua·si-prob·a·ble, adjective
  • qua·si-prob·a·bly, adverb

Words Nearby probable Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use probable in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for probable


/ (ˈprɒbəbəl) /

  1. likely to be or to happen but not necessarily so

  2. most likely: the probable cause of the accident

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

Origin of 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