rea·​son·​ing | \ ˈrēz-niŋ How to pronounce reasoning (audio) , 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 All of the court’s liberal justices, including Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan, voted against the decision, although none expanded on their reasoning. Fortune, "Melinda Gates has big plans for Chicago," 28 Jan. 2020 Bohan elaborated on his reasoning for helping Team Hong Kong when reached Friday. Washington Post, "Amid BlizzCon protest, Team Hong Kong’s Overwatch World Cup stay is short but sweet," 1 Nov. 2019 But don’t count on this reasoning to resonate with everyone. Lila Maclellan, Quartz at Work, "Responsible capitalism is not a form of millennial pandering," 24 Aug. 2019 The show's producers didn't elaborate on the reasoning behind Dunaway's ouster. Cydney Henderson, USA TODAY, "Faye Dunaway fired from one-woman play 'Tea at Five' before Broadway run: Reports," 24 July 2019 Cox tried to stay calm as Pomeranz explained his reasoning. NBC News, "An ER doctor was charged with abusing his baby. But 15 medical experts say there's no proof.," 27 Jan. 2020 Neither the majority of the five conservative justices nor the liberals explained their reasoning. Robert Barnes,, "Supreme Court allows Trump administration to proceed with immigration rules," 27 Jan. 2020 The 16 United Methodist bishops and advocacy group leaders who negotiated a recent proposal to split the denomination explained their reasoning at an event that was streamed live by United Methodist News Service. Washington Post, "United Methodist leaders explain plan to split denomination," 14 Jan. 2020 Junior linebacker Antjuan Simmons, who is not going to test the NFL draft process, explained his reasoning and exhibited the directives of a future captain. Chris Solari, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan State football youngsters hope to have 2020 vision for a program revival," 29 Dec. 2019

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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Time Traveler for reasoning

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for reasoning

Last Updated

23 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Reasoning.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for reasoning


How to pronounce reasoning (audio)

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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