Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

teleology

play
noun tel·e·ol·o·gy \ˌte-lē-ˈä-lə-jē, ˌtē-\

Definition of teleology

  1. 1a :  the study of evidences of design in natureb :  a doctrine (as in vitalism) that ends are immanent in naturec :  a doctrine explaining phenomena by final causes

  2. 2 :  the fact or character attributed to nature or natural processes of being directed toward an end or shaped by a purpose

  3. 3 :  the use of design or purpose as an explanation of natural phenomena

teleologist play \-jist\ noun


Origin of teleology

New Latin teleologia, from Greek tele-, telos end, purpose + -logia -logy — more at wheel


First Known Use: 1740


Medical Dictionary

teleology

play play
noun te·le·ol·o·gy \ˌtel-ē-ˈäl-ə-jē, ˌtēl-\

Medical Definition of teleology

plural teleologies

  1. 1a:  the study of evidences of design in natureb:  a doctrine (as in vitalism) that ends are immanent in naturec:  a doctrine explaining phenomena by final causes

  2. 2:  the fact or character attributed to nature or natural processes of being directed toward an end or shaped by a purpose

  3. 3:  the use of design or purpose as an explanation of natural phenomena




Learn More about teleology


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up teleology? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

the Celtic May Day festival

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image567572573

Which of these is a synonym of unctuous?

prompt maudlin angry oily
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ