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Crossword clues for probable

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
highly unlikely/likely/improbable/probable
▪ It’s highly unlikely that the project will be finished on time.
the most likely/probable explanation (=one that is probably true)
▪ The most likely explanation is that John missed the bus.
▪ The most probable explanation is that the water was contaminated.
the probable/likely cause
▪ The probable cause of the fire was faulty wiring.
▪ There is no record of Osbald's parentage but a Bernician extraction seems highly probable.
▪ But the generality and power can vary from the local and tentative to the universal and highly probable.
▪ It is highly probable that book provision and use will be a significant component in such inspections.
▪ It is highly probable that many of those in the initial cohort of patients would have died.
▪ Short gaps are thus more probable than long ones.
▪ That it makes the proposition for which it is offered more probable.
▪ A different principle of development - indeed, a reversal of the principle of increasing elaboration - seems more probable.
▪ It would be reasonable to accept any postulate that would make it more probable.
▪ It was held that the plaintiff had to show it was more probable than not that the injury was due to faulty manufacture.
▪ Even more probable than the extinction of humanity is a catastrophe that destroys our culture while leaving some humans still alive.
▪ Or else, which is more probable, the infection is particularly deadly to rabbits.
▪ Which of these two readings is more probable?
▪ Battiness - premature senility of some sort - seemed the most probable explanation of the whole affair.
▪ The most probable to go is William VanLandingham, who has been so inconsistent with the Giants.
▪ Weld has left three in at the four day stage with Steel Chimes looking the most probable runner.
▪ The most probable reading is the second.
▪ A nearly zero value, however, will be by far the most probable.
▪ The most probable cause of the problem was the males being infertile.
▪ Grismore believes high-altitude nuclear tests are the most probable source of the radioactive specks.
▪ The probability of each parse was then calculated and the most probable parse selected.
▪ It's quite probable that they did most of their courting in the cinema.
▪ It's quite probable that extensive cultivation here has erased any traces there may have been.
▪ It is quite probable that both IgE and enzyme deficiencies are important in causing the symptoms.
▪ Yet it is quite probable that she bears not a single one of the old king's genes.
▪ It is quite probable that religious symbolism was once exclusive to each particular faith.
▪ It is also very probable that the cognitive style which overinclusive and divergent thinking have in common is strongly inherited.
▪ It is very probable that Grey took some part in Leapor's subscription.
▪ In practice it is very probable that they do not.
▪ It is very probable that such differences do exist, and will be identified by suitable research work.
▪ This is most unlikely if the shares are listed but very probable if the company is a private one.
▪ But that something like this happened is very probable.
▪ The most probable cause of the problem was the males being infertile.
▪ The issue then was whether the Commonwealth had probable cause sufficient to justify those seizures.
▪ Makers Adam Leisure, of Harrogate, said the probable cause of the fire was a faulty plug socket or wiring.
▪ According to a probable cause affidavit, Tarver and his girlfriend began to fight over money.
▪ The probable cause in this child's case was a viral infection.
▪ But a federal judge ruled last May that probable cause existed to grant the extradition.
▪ Here the judge seemed to raise the bar in the test for probable cause.
▪ It was held that the accused was aware of the probable consequences of firing the gun as he did.
▪ The probable consequence is that doctors will be given the task.
▪ The most probable outcome is 100-150 deaths from thyroid cancer over the same period.
▪ It seems probable that the election will be held in May.
▪ Light rain is probable tomorrow evening.
▪ Measles is the probable cause of illness in the three athletes.
▪ The project will go ahead, at a probable cost of $2.1 million.
▪ The report states that the probable cause of death was a heart attack.
▪ Unless the government agrees to further talks, a strike seems highly probable.
▪ He openly talked of him as the probable successor to the see of Canterbury.
▪ If the measure passes the House, Senate approval is considered probable.
▪ It is probable that deliberate equivocation in respect of the intended sense of word forms is always to some extent odd.
▪ It is probable that in retrospect he gave that factor more weight than it carried at the time.
▪ It is very probable that Grey took some part in Leapor's subscription.
▪ It will give them crucial details about his shoe size and probable height and weight.
▪ She disposed quickly of red herrings, usually sought out the least probable suspect and rarely failed.
▪ There is no record of Osbald's parentage but a Bernician extraction seems highly probable.
▪ Four further claims for Hurricanes were made by all 12 pilots of the 156° Gruppo jointly, two confirmed and two probables.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Probable \Prob"a*ble\, a. [L. probabilis, fr. probare to try, approve, prove: cf. F. probable. See Prove, and cf. Provable.]

  1. Capable of being proved. [Obs.]

  2. Having more evidence for than against; supported by evidence which inclines the mind to believe, but leaves some room for doubt; likely.

    That is accounted probable which has better arguments producible for it than can be brought against it.

    I do not say that the principles of religion are merely probable; I have before asserted them to be morally certain.
    --Bp. Wilkins.

  3. Rendering probable; supporting, or giving ground for, belief, but not demonstrating; as, probable evidence; probable presumption.

    Probable cause (Law), a reasonable ground of presumption that a charge is, or my be, well founded.

    Probable error (of an observation, or of the mean of a number), that within which, taken positively and negatively, there is an even chance that the real error shall lie. Thus, if 3[sec] is the probable error in a given case, the chances that the real error is greater than 3[sec] are equal to the chances that it is less. The probable error is computed from the observations made, and is used to express their degree of accuracy.

    The probable, that which is within the bounds of probability; that which is not unnatural or preternatural; -- opposed to the marvelous.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

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.


a. 1 likely or most likely to be true. 2 Likely to happen. 3 Supporting, or giving ground for, belief, but not demonstrating. 4 (context obsolete English) Capable of being proved.

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

  2. apparently destined; "the probable consequences of going ahead with the scheme"


n. an applicant likely to be chosen


Usage examples of "probable".

He sat there in the office, tapping at the computer as he wrung the cost analyses out of it, adding variables, removing the more unlikely ones, inserting market projections and probable effects on other affiliated firms of the company.

The difficulty therefore which he apprehended there might be in corrupting this young wench, and the danger which would accrue to his character on the discovery, were such strong dissuasives, that it is probable he at first intended to have contented himself with the pleasing ideas which the sight of beauty furnishes us with.

This would amply account for the removal of Richard Lee to Virginia, and for the ambition he seems to have been inspired with, to build and improve, without attributing to him any apprehension of probable punishment for his political course.

Monroe street, Chicago, was at that time and for several years afterwards the scene of more billiard matches than any similar resort in the United States, it being the headquarters of the bookmaking fraternity as well as the billiardists from all sections of the country, and it is more than probable that larger sums of money changed hands over the result of the games that were played there during the winter of 1885 and 1886 than changed hands in any other hall in the country, the leading billiard rooms of Gotham not excepted.

Il est bien probable que de petits faunes ignorants et rustiques, se sachant rien de la bonne nouvelle, epierent entre les branches Onoflette et Longis, et, les prenant pour un chevrier et pour une bergere, jouerent innocemment du pipeau sur leur passage.

Even if he had known of the death of Bouton, it is probable that he would have even more decisively turned away and gone for a walk.

He believed Hill to be a cunning scoundrel who had overreached the police for some purpose of his own by accusing Birchill, and who, to make his story more probable, had even implicated himself in the supposed burglary as a terrorized accomplice.

Drosera, and quickly cause strong inflection, it seems probable that strychnine, nicotine, digitaline, and hydrocyanic acid, excite inflection by acting on elements in no way analogous to the nervecells of animals.

However, a statute designating a State official as the proper person to receive service of process in such litigation must, to be valid, contain a provision making it reasonably probable that a notice of such service will be communicated to the person sued.

The general type of mirage was not unlike some of the wilder forms observed and drawn by the arctic whaler Scoresby in 1820, but at this time and place, with those dark, unknown mountain peaks soaring stupendously ahead, that anomalous elder-world discovery in our minds, and the pall of probable disaster enveloping the greater part of our expedition, we all seemed to find in it a taint of latent malignity and infinitely evil portent.

We also even find probable microfossils in some rocks, like the Gunflint Chert of Minnesota, about 3.

The reason for this, which we did not learn until weeks later, was that Sherman, who had cut loose from Atlanta and started on his famous March to the Sea, had taken such a course as rendered it probable that Millen was one of his objective points.

The modified offspring from the later and more highly improved branches in the lines of descent, will, it is probable, often take the place of, and so destroy, the earlier and less improved branches: this is represented in the diagram by some of the lower branches not reaching to the upper horizontal lines.

I attribute to inheritance from a common progenitor, for it can rarely have happened that natural selection will have modified several species, fitted to more or less widely-different habits, in exactly the same manner: and as these so-called generic characters have been inherited from a remote period, since that period when the species first branched off from their common progenitor, and subsequently have not varied or come to differ in any degree, or only in a slight degree, it is not probable that they should vary at the present day.

It is probable that a great number of people could be paired off in couples who would make permanently happy and successful monogamic homes for their sound and healthy children.