verb (used with object), un·der·lay, un·der·lain, un·der·ly·ing.
Examples from the Web for underlie
Now, in the first study of its kind, neuroscientists have pinpointed the brain circuits that underlie unrealistic optimism.
The concept of impulse control comes from a better understanding of the brain mechanisms that underlie self-restraint.
In the Little Cumbrae they appear on the east side, where they underlie and are interbedded with the lavas.
In some lines a fine sense of color values must underlie good work, in others the ability to draw easily.Vocational Guidance for Girls|Marguerite Stockman Dickson
Swedenborg, the theologian, set down in due form many of the principles that underlie the modern nebular hypothesis.Astronomy|David Todd
But there are differences that underlie the action of the two parties which are unmistakable, and are worth finding out.Practical Politics; or, the Liberalism of To-day|Alfred Farthing Robbins
This, however, takes account of but a very small part of the ideas that underlie the word.Essays on Life, Art and Science|Samuel Butler
British Dictionary definitions for underlie
verb -lies, -lying, -lay or -lain (tr)
Word Origin and History for underlie
Old English under licgan "to be subordinate to, to submit to;" see under + lie (v.2). Meaning "to lie under or beneath" is attested from c.1600; figurative sense of "to be the basis of" is attested from 1852 (implied in underlying).