rea·​son·​able | \ ˈrēz-nə-bəl How to pronounce reasonable (audio) , ˈrē-zᵊn-ə-bəl \

Definition of reasonable

1a : being in accordance with reason a reasonable theory
b : not extreme or excessive reasonable requests
c : moderate, fair a reasonable chance a reasonable price
2a : having the faculty of reason
b : possessing sound judgment a reasonable man

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Other Words from reasonable

reasonability \ ˌrēz-​nə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce reasonable (audio) , ˌrē-​zᵊn-​ə-​ \ noun
reasonableness \ ˈrēz-​nə-​bəl-​nəs How to pronounce reasonable (audio) , ˈrē-​zᵊn-​ə-​ \ noun
reasonably \ ˈrēz-​nə-​blē How to pronounce reasonable (audio) , ˈrē-​zᵊn-​ə-​ \ adverb

Examples of reasonable in a Sentence

We have reasonable cause not to believe him. She offered a reasonable compromise. It's not reasonable to expect perfect weather. Please be more reasonable. There is no way I'll be able to finish all this work in so little time. A reasonable man would not expect such a thing. Our boss has reasonable expectations of his employees. The team has a reasonable chance of winning. He makes a reasonable amount of money. The store's prices are reasonable. The hotel offers excellent accommodations at reasonable rates.
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Recent Examples on the Web In order to convict Chauvin of second-degree murder, prosecutors will need to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Chauvin caused Floyd's death while committing or attempting to commit a related felony, in this case third-degree assault. Erin Donaghue, CBS News, "Live Updates: Police training expert to continue testimony in Derek Chauvin trial," 7 Apr. 2021 Nelson rose for his opening statement, which lasted about 20 minutes, and emphasized the importance of reasonable doubt. Rochelle Olson, Star Tribune, "Witness: Derek Chauvin purposely shifted weight to add pressure on George Floyd's neck," 29 Mar. 2021 To get a guilty verdict, prosecutors have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Chauvin caused Floyd's death. Eric Levenson, CNN, "Derek Chauvin is on trial for George Floyd's death. America's criminal justice system is not," 28 Mar. 2021 Prosecutors are never required to prove motive in a case of intentional murder; all the law calls for is proof beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused intended to kill. Andrew C. Mccarthy, National Review, "Al-Issa Makes First Court Appearance in Boulder," 25 Mar. 2021 Justice Department prosecutors could struggle to find enough evidence to prove a conspiracy beyond reasonable doubt. David Rohde, The New Yorker, "Garland Is the Last, Best Chance to Uncover Trump’s Role on January 6th," 21 Mar. 2021 Even then, two officials must agree beyond a reasonable doubt that the signature is significantly different to disqualify it. Michael R. Blood And Kathleen Ronayne, USA TODAY, "As signature collection ends, California heads toward recall of Gavin Newsom," 16 Mar. 2021 Over the course of his sentence, Payne’s legal team has hit several roadblocks while seeking clemency — despite evidence that, at the very least, creates ample reasonable doubt. Asia Ewart,, "What To Know About Pervis Payne, Who Maintains His Innocence While Awaiting Execution," 15 Mar. 2021 Still, defense attorneys who aren’t connected to the case say all Nelson has to do is raise reasonable doubt in a single juror’s mind. Fox News, "Floyd’s cause of death, ex-cop’s force will be keys at trial," 8 Mar. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'reasonable.' 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 reasonable

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for reasonable

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The first known use of reasonable was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

9 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Reasonable.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for reasonable



English Language Learners Definition of reasonable

: fair and sensible
: fairly or moderately good
: not too expensive


rea·​son·​able | \ ˈrēz-nə-bəl How to pronounce reasonable (audio) , ˈrē-zᵊn-ə-bəl \

Kids Definition of reasonable

1 : fair and sensible I'm willing to compromise, but her demands are not reasonable.
2 : not too expensive Let's find a hotel with reasonable rates.
3 : fairly or moderately good Our team has a reasonable chance of winning.

Other Words from reasonable

reasonableness noun
reasonably \ -​blē \ adverb



Legal Definition of reasonable

1a : being in accordance with reason, fairness, duty, or prudence
b : of an appropriate degree or kind
c : supported or justified by fact or circumstance a reasonable belief that force was necessary for self-defense
2 : applying reason or logic broadly : rational sense 1 a reasonable mind

Other Words from reasonable

reasonableness noun
reasonably adverb

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