rea·​son·​ing | \ ˈrēz-niŋ, ˈrē-zᵊn-iŋ\

Definition of reasoning

1 : the use of reason especially : the drawing of inferences or conclusions through the use of reason
2 : an instance of the use of reason : argument

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Examples of reasoning in a Sentence

Could you explain your reasoning? They told everyone the reasoning behind the decision. a conclusion based on fallacious reasoning Humans possess the power of reasoning.
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Recent Examples on the Web

On August 2nd, Musk emailed Tesla’s board of directors, head of finance, and general counsel to explain his reasoning for taking Tesla private. Sean O'kane, The Verge, "Elon Musk sued by SEC over ‘funding secured’ tweet," 27 Sep. 2018 Prosecutors and the judge on Friday explained to the court their reasoning for accepting a plea deal. Fox News, "Ex-prosecutor who helped drug dealers for sex gets probation," 17 Aug. 2018 Chapman also explained her reasoning for staying out of the spotlight since the allegations against Weinstein came to light. Sara M Moniuszko, USA TODAY, "Georgina Chapman, Harvey Weinstein's estranged wife, says she knew nothing about alleged assaults," 10 May 2018 Rogers explained his reasoning for his tweet, which was posted after Tampa Bay used a second round pick to select North Carolina defensive back M.J. Stewart with the No. Scooby Axson,, "Bucs Investigating Threatening Tweet Against GM Jason Licht," 30 Apr. 2018 The judge stayed his decision for 90 days, giving the Department of Homeland Security the opportunity to better explain its reasoning for canceling the program. New York Times,, "Government must resume DACA and accept new applications, federal judge rules," 24 Apr. 2018 The judge stayed his decision for 90 days and gave the Department of Homeland Security, which administers the program, the opportunity to better explain its reasoning for canceling it. Miriam Jordan, New York Times, "U.S. Must Keep DACA and Accept New Applications, Federal Judge Rules," 24 Apr. 2018 Mayor John Hamilton made the announcement Thursday afternoon and issued a 15-page statement explaining his reasoning and thoughts. Indianapolis Star, "Bloomington Police get OK from mayor to purchase armored vehicle," 29 Mar. 2018 Part of the reasoning behind the attempts to revise targets downwards is that the biofuel industry seems to be lagging. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "EPA reconsidering biofuel targets after production goals are missed," 25 Nov. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for reasoning

Last Updated

12 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for reasoning

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

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More Definitions for reasoning



English Language Learners Definition of reasoning

: the process of thinking about something in a logical way in order to form a conclusion or judgment

: the ability of the mind to think and understand things in a logical way

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