presumption

noun
pre·​sump·​tion | \ pri-ˈzəm(p)-shən How to pronounce presumption (audio) \

Definition of presumption

1 : presumptuous attitude or conduct : audacity
2a : an attitude or belief dictated by probability : assumption
b : the ground, reason, or evidence lending probability to a belief
3 : a legal inference as to the existence or truth of a fact not certainly known that is drawn from the known or proved existence of some other fact

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Examples of presumption in a Sentence

The trial was unfair from the beginning because there was no presumption of innocence. a defendant's right to a presumption of innocence

Recent Examples on the Web

Republicans accused Mueller of being unfair to the president and ignoring the traditional presumption of innocence. Anchorage Daily News, "Soft-spoken Mueller warns of ongoing election interference, and criticizes Trump," 25 July 2019 The presumption of innocence, a bedrock in the search for justice, was trampled upon at the expense of Mr. Smollett and notably, on the eve of a mayoral election. San Diego Union-Tribune, "What happened? A timeline of the Jussie Smollett case," 20 Feb. 2019 Such questions evinced a presumption of my innate moral fiber — not to mention a complacency in the belief that any white Westerner was capable of starting an NGO, regardless of qualification or mission. Abigail Higgins, Vox, "How the “white-savior industrial complex” failed Liberia’s girls," 24 Oct. 2018 Anything, without presumption, can be Prada-fied, from lipstick canisters to classic cars, from Belle du Jour to Frankenstein. Vogue, "The Women Designers Who Changed The Way We Dress," 14 Aug. 2019 The last few years have seen this optimistic presumption placed under siege. Paul A. Kramer, The New Republic, "The Harsh World of Offshore Borders," 8 Aug. 2019 The working presumption at NASA is that the flag fell, said John Uri, manager of the Johnson Space Center History Office. Ryan W. Miller, USA TODAY, "Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong put a flag on the moon. Here's what you can and can't see in the iconic photo," 19 July 2019 The working presumption is that will happen for the 2022 draft. Ira Winderman, sun-sentinel.com, "Winderman: Whiteside, Spoelstra now past tense, as trade clears air | Commentary," 6 July 2019 Toy Story 4 had to fight the early presumption among skeptics (including this writer) that its existence was solely to make money for Disney’s coffers. Josh Spiegel, The Hollywood Reporter, "How 'Toy Story 4' Says Goodbye (Again)," 23 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'presumption.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of presumption

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for presumption

Middle English presumpcioun, from Anglo-French presumption, from Late Latin & Latin; Late Latin praesumption-, praesumptio presumptuous attitude, from Latin, assumption, from praesumere

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Statistics for presumption

Last Updated

7 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for presumption

The first known use of presumption was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for presumption

presumption

noun

English Language Learners Definition of presumption

: a belief that something is true even though it has not been proved
law : an act of accepting that something is true until it is proved not true
formal : willingness to do something without the right or permission to do it

presumption

noun
pre·​sump·​tion | \ pri-ˈzəmp-shən How to pronounce presumption (audio) \

Kids Definition of presumption

1 : behavior or attitude going beyond what is proper
2 : a strong reason for believing something to be so
3 : something believed to be so but not proved

presumption

noun
pre·​sump·​tion | \ pri-ˈzəmp-shən How to pronounce presumption (audio) \

Legal Definition of presumption

: an inference as to the existence of a fact not certainly known that the law requires to be drawn from the known or proven existence of some other fact
conclusive presumption
: a presumption that the law does not allow to be rebutted

called also irrebuttable presumption

— compare rebuttable presumption in this entry
mandatory presumption
: a presumption that a jury is required by law to make upon proof of a given fact — compare permissive presumption in this entry
permissive presumption
: an inference or presumption that a jury is allowed but not required to make from a given set of facts

called also permissive inference

— compare mandatory presumption in this entry
presumption of fact
: a presumption founded on a previous experience or on general knowledge of a connection between a known fact and one inferred from it
presumption of innocence
: a rebuttable presumption in the favor of the defendant in a criminal action imposing on the prosecution the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt
presumption of intent
: a permissive presumption that if a criminal defendant committed an act it was his or her intent to commit it
presumption of law
: a presumption (as of the innocence of a criminal defendant) founded on a rule or policy of law regardless of fact
presumption of survivorship
: the presumption in the absence of direct evidence that of two or more persons dying in a common disaster (as a fire) one was the last to die because of youth, strength, or other reasons rendering survivorship likely
rebuttable presumption
: a presumption that may be rebutted by evidence to the contrary — compare conclusive presumption in this entry

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Comments on presumption

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