[ sin-thuh-sis ]
/ ˈsɪn θə sɪs /

noun, plural syn·the·ses [sin-thuh-seez] /ˈsɪn θəˌsiz/.

the combining of the constituent elements of separate material or abstract entities into a single or unified entity (opposed to analysis,) the separating of any material or abstract entity into its constituent elements.
a complex whole formed by combining.
Chemistry. the forming or building of a more complex substance or compound from elements or simpler compounds.
Philosophy. the third stage of argument in Hegelian dialectic, which reconciles the mutually contradictory first two propositions, thesis and antithesis.
Biology. modern synthesis, a consolidation of the results of various lines of investigation from the 1920s through the 1950s that supported and reconciled the Darwinian theory of evolution and the Mendelian laws of inheritance in terms of natural selection acting on genetic variation.
Psychology, Psychiatry. the integration of traits, attitudes, and impulses to create a total personality.


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Origin of synthesis

1580–90; < Latin < Greek sýnthesis, equivalent to syn- syn- + the- (stem of tithénai to put, place) + -sis -sis


syn·the·sist, nounnon·syn·the·sis, noun, plural non·syn·the··syn·the·sis, noun, plural re·syn·the·ses.


antithesis synthesis thesis

Definition for synthesis (2 of 2)

Hegelian dialectic


an interpretive method, originally used to relate specific entities or events to the absolute idea, in which some assertible proposition (thesis) is necessarily opposed by an equally assertible and apparently contradictory proposition (antithesis), the mutual contradiction being reconciled on a higher level of truth by a third proposition (synthesis). Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for synthesis

British Dictionary definitions for synthesis (1 of 2)

/ (ˈsɪnθɪsɪs) /

noun plural -ses (-ˌsiːz)

the process of combining objects or ideas into a complex wholeCompare analysis
the combination or whole produced by such a process
the process of producing a compound by a chemical reaction or series of reactions, usually from simpler or commonly available starting materials
linguistics the use of inflections rather than word order and function words to express the syntactic relations in a languageCompare analysis (def. 5)
philosophy archaic synthetic reasoning
  1. (in the writings of Kant) the unification of one concept with another not contained in itCompare analysis (def. 7)
  2. the final stage in the Hegelian dialectic, that resolves the contradiction between thesis and antithesis

Derived forms of synthesis

synthesist, noun

Word Origin for synthesis

C17: via Latin from Greek sunthesis, from suntithenai to put together, from syn- + tithenai to place

British Dictionary definitions for synthesis (2 of 2)

Hegelian dialectic
/ (hɪˈɡeɪlɪan, heɪˈɡiː-) /


philosophy an interpretive method in which the contradiction between a proposition (thesis) and its antithesis is resolved at a higher level of truth (synthesis)
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

Medical definitions for synthesis

[ sĭnthĭ-sĭs ]

n. pl. syn•the•ses (-sēz′)

The combining of separate elements or substances to form a coherent whole.
Formation of a chemical compound from simpler compounds or elements.
A period in the cell cycle.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for synthesis

[ sĭnthĭ-sĭs ]

Plural syntheses (sĭnthĭ-sēz′)

The formation of a chemical compound through the combination of simpler compounds or elements.

Other words from synthesis

synthesize verb
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.