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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
a likely/plausible scenario
▪ The more likely scenario is that support for the group will wane.
a plausible/convincing story
▪ She tried to think up a convincing story to tell her parents.
a reasonable/plausible excuse (=one that other people will believe)
▪ If your train was cancelled, that is a perfectly reasonable excuse.
a reasonable/plausible explanation (=one that is easy to believe)
▪ Pilot error is the most plausible explanation for the crash.
▪ As we shall see in Chapter 2, this claim has now become less plausible and less acceptable.
▪ Unless some one more plausible comes forward, therefore, the challenge is likely to have two results.
▪ Indeed, our scenarios are nothing more than invitations to everyone to write better, more plausible, even more desirable outcomes.
▪ Therefore, word sequences that are grammatically acceptable are considered to be more plausible than word sequences that are grammatically unacceptable.
▪ I found imagining myself as a bond salesman only marginally more plausible than imagining myself as a bond trader.
▪ Hence, a political economy of the urban is scarcely more plausible now than it has ever been in the past.
▪ It looks more plausible to play 21 ... d8 and then invade on d4 with a knight.
▪ A more plausible alternative was the renovation of existing buildings, some of which had originally been solid structures.
▪ There were other possibilities but for the moment these seemed the most plausible.
▪ His name was Sinon, and he was a most plausible speaker.
▪ The reader can decide which of the possible explanations is the most plausible.
▪ It was the one where the reassurance of the central tradition might seem to be most plausible.
▪ The most plausible explanation is that pauses are used by a speaker for planning what to say next.
▪ Even if she had the most plausible answers, there still would be folks wishing Clinton would continue to take political pratfalls.
▪ The market clearing paradigm is reasonably robust and the Rational Expectations assumption is here most plausible.
▪ The most plausible explanation of this observation is an abrupt, massive, global acidification of rainwater.
▪ It is of course quite plausible that the principle of monetary judgments applied in formulary procedure.
▪ Thus it is quite plausible to suggest that see evokes some form of inference here.
▪ Standing on these dramatic cliffs, the legends of the area seem quite plausible.
▪ Miracle in the figurative sense, since although we do not know how cells evolved, quite plausible scenarios have been proposed.
▪ This reply sounds very plausible, until one reflects on it; and then a serious difficulty emerges.
▪ I shall try to show that neither of them is very plausible.
▪ This is certainly a very plausible alternative explanation for the demise of the Daily Herald.
▪ But for other experiments the interpretation seems very plausible.
▪ Cusack is a very plausible Rob, hangdog, clever, alienated, mopey and dopey.
▪ But efforts to work out this atomistic society in detail are not very plausible.
▪ But Preston had thought that very plausible at the time.
▪ The second was surely never very plausible, and has now been generally abandoned.
▪ But it is quite possible to think of plausible cases.
▪ No. 17. finding the plausible excuse Think of some situation where one needs tact and diplomacy.
▪ Try processing all the relevant information contained in the problem to help you come up with one plausible explanation.
▪ But that scenario presented geophysicists with a radical yet plausible explanation for the anti-continents.
▪ There is only one really plausible explanation.
▪ The most plausible explanation of this observation is an abrupt, massive, global acidification of rainwater.
▪ Coalition mongering is the only plausible explanation.
▪ Thus, the observer effect is not a plausible explanation of the phenomenon.
▪ Convincing them otherwise would take double-blind trials and a plausible explanation of how the sensitivity might arise.
▪ The most plausible explanation is that pauses are used by a speaker for planning what to say next.
▪ This, too, is a plausible scenario.
▪ Miracle in the figurative sense, since although we do not know how cells evolved, quite plausible scenarios have been proposed.
▪ His explanation sounds fairly plausible to me.
▪ I need to think of a plausible excuse for not going to the meeting.
▪ Langham's story sounded plausible at the time.
▪ Although she is pretend-reading and she guesses what the print probably says rather than decoding the print, her story sounds plausible.
▪ But it is quite possible to think of plausible cases.
▪ In any plausible way of forming Jupiter the hydrogen and helium are initially well mixed at a molecular level.
▪ In comparison with fabliaux like that, the misbehaviour of the monk and the wife is all too deliberate and plausible.
▪ Students may well differ in how plausible they find efficient-market theory.
▪ The most plausible explanation of this observation is an abrupt, massive, global acidification of rainwater.
▪ Where the medium is not continuous on the scale of the measurement being made the assumption is not so plausible.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Plausible \Plau"si*ble\, a. [L. plausibilis praiseworthy, from plaudere, plausum, to applaud, clap the hands, strike, beat.]

  1. Worthy of being applauded; praiseworthy; commendable; ready. [Obs.]
    --Bp. Hacket.

  2. Obtaining approbation; specifically pleasing; apparently right; specious; as, a plausible pretext; plausible manners; a plausible delusion. ``Plausible and popular arguments.''

  3. Using specious arguments or discourse; as, a plausible speaker.

    Syn: Plausible, Specious.

    Usage: Plausible denotes that which seems reasonable, yet leaves distrust in the judgment. Specious describes that which presents a fair appearance to the view and yet covers something false. Specious refers more definitely to the act or purpose of false representation; plausible has more reference to the effect on the beholder or hearer. An argument may by specious when it is not plausible because its sophistry is so easily discovered.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1540s, "acceptable, agreeable," from Latin plausibilis "deserving applause, acceptable," from plaus-, past participle stem of plaudere "to applaud" (see plaudit). Meaning "having the appearance of truth" is recorded from 1560s. Related: Plausibly.


a. 1 Seemingly or apparently valid, likely, or acceptable; credible: a plausible excuse. 2 Obtaining approbation; specifically pleasing; apparently right; specious. 3 (context obsolete English) Worthy of being applauded; praiseworthy; commendable; ready.

  1. adj. apparently reasonable and valid [ant: implausible]

  2. likely but not certain to be or become true or real; "a likely result"; "he foresaw a probable loss" [syn: probable, likely] [ant: improbable]

  3. within the realm of credibility; "not a very likely excuse"; "a plausible story" [syn: likely]

  4. appearing to merit belief or acceptance; "a credible witness"; "a plausible story" [syn: credible]


Usage examples of "plausible".

Montgomery, in an excellent paper, advances the theory, which is very plausible, that intrauterine amputations are caused by contraction of bands or membranes of organized lymph encircling the limb and producing amputation by the same process of disjunctive atrophy that the surgeons induce by ligature.

His object was to prove that the assignment was not in the deed when Talbott got it: but it was discovered he could not swear this safely, without first swearing the deed was opened--and if he swore it was opened, he must show a motive for opening it, and the conclusion with him and his father was that the pointing out the error would appear the most plausible.

That impression, however, he desired to deepen, and whilst Armand was worrying his brain to find a plausible excuse for going away, de Batz was racking his to find one for keeping him here.

He went to his room early, explaining that he was weary from the ride, a perfectly plausible excuse.

This notion is plausible in a merely hydrostatical point of view, and is supposed to have been adopted by most of the Fellows of Trinity, but certainly not by Thorp, who is one of the most amiable of their number.

Worse, he thought shiftable hodiechrons and temporal oscillation were entirely plausible, and when she told him she thought Max was having some kind of midlife crisis, Dr.

Beware of Aswydd influences, have none of that house near you, have your food tasted, and do not be misled by plausible villains.

This motion was plausible, and this time the obstructor spoke plausibly, concealing the temper which really pervaded his opposition.

Changes in the entry of calcium ions, or the phosphorylation of membrane constituents, or the activation of NMDA receptors, all seem plausible ways of bringing about a temporary change in the electrical properties of a cell, but what makes the change persist -what puts the L into LTP - should be the important question, if LTP is really to serve as a model for long-term memory.

If so, it seems plausible that repressed, unconscious, and preconscious mental processes that simply happen to be unconscious may, with training, be brought into the light of introspective awareness.

There is no plausible correspondence between these cases and the sending out from the ark of the patriarchal family to repeople the world.

Causey told me lent a plausible historical context to the implausible reality of Diamond Bar, but the key ingredient of the spell that had worked an enchantment upon the prison was missing, and when at last I went to visit Czerny, I had retrenched somewhat and was content to lean upon my assumption that we knew nothing of our circumstance and that everything we thought we knew might well have been put forward to distract us from the truth.

Neither the Pasteurians nor their opponents the Sanitarians would leave parents free to bring up their children naked, though that course also has some plausible advocates.

Though she was abnormally shrewd, a plausible sharpster had probed for a weak point and gouged her without mercy.

The eloquent trifler, whose stock of words has been accumulated by a pair of light fingers, would stand denuded of his plausible pretences as soon as it were seen how roguishly he came by his eloquence.