Simple Definition of hypothetical
: involving or based on a suggested idea or theory : involving or based on a hypothesis
: not real : imagined as an example
Examples of hypothetical in a sentence
She described a hypothetical case to clarify her point.
<we talked about what we would do in various hypothetical emergencies>
Did You Know?
The noun hypothesis comes straight from the Greek word meaning "foundation" or "base"--that is something "put under" something else. So a hypothesis is something you assume to be true in order that you can use it as the base or basis for a line of reasoning--and any such assumption can be called hypothetical. So, for example, the theory that the dinosaurs became extinct because of a giant meteor that struck the earth near the Yucatán Peninsula involves the hypothesis that such a collision would have had such terrible effects on the earth's climate that the great reptiles would have been doomed. Once a hypothesis has been thoroughly studied and researched without being proved wrong, it generally comes to be called a theory instead.
First Known Use of hypothetical
HYPOTHETICAL Defined for Kids
Definition of hypothetical for Students
1 : involving or based on a hypothesis
2 : imagined as an example for further thought <a hypothetical situation>
hypotheticallyadverb <speaking hypothetically>
Seen and Heard
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