reason

noun
rea·​son | \ ˈrē-zᵊn How to pronounce reason (audio) \

Definition of reason

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a statement offered in explanation or justification gave reasons that were quite satisfactory
b : a rational ground or motive a good reason to act soon
c : the thing that makes some fact intelligible : cause the reason for earthquakes the real reason why he wanted me to stay— Graham Greene
d : a sufficient ground of explanation or of logical defense especially : something (such as a principle or law) that supports a conclusion or explains a fact the reasons behind her client's action
2a(1) : the power of comprehending, inferring, or thinking especially in orderly rational ways : intelligence
(2) : proper exercise of the mind
(3) : sanity
b : the sum of the intellectual powers
3 archaic : treatment that affords satisfaction
in reason within reason
: within reasonable limits
with reason
: with good cause

reason

verb
reasoned; reasoning\ ˈrēz-​niŋ How to pronounce reason (audio) , ˈrē-​zᵊn-​iŋ \

Definition of reason (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to use the faculty of reason so as to arrive at conclusions
2a : to talk with another so as to influence actions or opinions can't reason with them
b obsolete : to take part in conversation, discussion, or argument

transitive verb

1 : to discover, formulate, or conclude by the use of reason a carefully reasoned analysis
2 : to persuade or influence by the use of reason
3 archaic : to justify or support with reasons

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Other Words from reason

Verb

reasoner \ ˈrēz-​nər How to pronounce reason (audio) , ˈrē-​zᵊn-​ər \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for reason

Verb

think, cogitate, reflect, reason, speculate, deliberate mean to use one's powers of conception, judgment, or inference. think is general and may apply to any mental activity, but used alone often suggests attainment of clear ideas or conclusions. teaches students how to think cogitate implies deep or intent thinking. cogitated on the mysteries of nature reflect suggests unhurried consideration of something recalled to the mind. reflecting on fifty years of married life reason stresses consecutive logical thinking. able to reason brilliantly in debate speculate implies reasoning about things theoretical or problematic. speculated on the fate of the lost explorers deliberate suggests slow or careful reasoning before forming an opinion or reaching a conclusion or decision. the jury deliberated for five hours

Examples of reason in a Sentence

Noun I gave a reason for my absence. Is there a reason for your strange behavior? There is a reason why they don't want to come. I can't give you the report for the simple reason that it isn't yet finished. She explained her reasons for deciding to change jobs. He wanted to know the reason for their decision. Give me one good reason why I should believe you. For obvious reasons, we can't do that yet. For reasons of space, some of the charts and graphs have been omitted from the article. She resigned for personal reasons. Verb He lost the ability to reason. He reasoned that both statements couldn't be true. She reasoned that something must be wrong.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun For this reason, here are five tips to increase productivity in the workplace. Yec, Forbes, 20 Sep. 2021 Last year's show was canceled due to the pandemic, and this year's event was delayed from May for the same reason. Monique Jessen, PEOPLE.com, 20 Sep. 2021 For this reason, the IPR process has irked brand-name pharmaceutical companies. Ed Silverman, STAT, 20 Sep. 2021 For this reason alone, the Chargers are bracing for a potential load of Elliott. Jeff Miller, Los Angeles Times, 19 Sep. 2021 Today the issue of the coronavirus remains a strength for Democrats for a simple reason: voters like the way Democrats are handling the pandemic for the most part. Harry Enten, CNN, 19 Sep. 2021 For this reason, the resort is open from mid-May to mid-October each year. Kathryn Romeyn, Travel + Leisure, 18 Sep. 2021 In China, Jiangnan, a region south of the Yangtze River, is known as the Land of Fish and Rice, and for good reason. The New Yorker, 17 Sep. 2021 Still looking for a good reason why MLB abandoned its expansion to 40-man game-day rosters in September, choosing instead a 28-man limit. Bruce Jenkins, San Francisco Chronicle, 17 Sep. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Doctors and scientists have tried to reason with them, to no avail. Robert Gehrke, The Salt Lake Tribune, 20 Sep. 2021 While Trump continued to insist the election was stolen, the authors reveal that behind the scenes, many top Republicans, including members of his own Cabinet, tried to reason with him to concede. Jamie Gangel, Jeremy Herb And Elizabeth Stuart, CNN, 14 Sep. 2021 Differential privacy, according to the bureau, offers a way to reason about the fundamental leak of individual data that comes with any publication of aggregate totals in a way that is not possible with methods used by the bureau in the past. Paulina Pineda, The Arizona Republic, 11 Aug. 2021 Even firms with a robust risk register don’t typically aggregate everyone’s risk acceptance decisions into a single item that SMEs can reason about. Sammy Migues, Forbes, 3 June 2021 Kids should talk to their parents and try to reason with them. Tara C. Smith, SELF, 12 Aug. 2021 That may give Bay Area parents reason to think twice about sending their kids back to school until the current surge abates, said Rupa Marya, a doctor at UCSF. Michael Cabanatuan, San Francisco Chronicle, 13 Aug. 2021 Nothing beyond Grier and coach Brian Flores trying to reason with Howard. Dave Hyde, sun-sentinel.com, 27 July 2021 That's because God gave us a brain to think and reason with. Holly Yan, CNN, 19 July 2021

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

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 2b

History and Etymology for reason

Noun

Middle English resoun, from Anglo-French raisun, from Latin ration-, ratio "reckoning, calculation, explanation," from reri "to calculate, think;" probably akin to Goth rathjo "account, explanation"

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Time Traveler for reason

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near reason

reask

reason

reasonable

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Last Updated

22 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Reason.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/reason. Accessed 24 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for reason

reason

noun

English Language Learners Definition of reason

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a statement or fact that explains why something is the way it is, why someone does, thinks, or says something, or why someone behaves a certain way
: a fact, condition, or situation that makes it proper or appropriate to do something, feel something, etc.
: the power of the mind to think and understand in a logical way

reason

verb

English Language Learners Definition of reason (Entry 2 of 2)

: to think in a logical way
: to form (a conclusion or judgment) by thinking logically

reason

noun
rea·​son | \ ˈrē-zᵊn How to pronounce reason (audio) \

Kids Definition of reason

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a statement given to explain a belief or an act My parents gave a reason for my absence.
2 : a fact that makes something right or fair to do I have reasons for what I did.
3 : cause entry 1 sense 1 The child wanted to know the reason for rain.
4 : the power to think and understand in a logical way
5 : a fair and sensible way of thinking about something He won't listen to reason.

reason

verb
reasoned; reasoning

Kids Definition of reason (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to think in a logical way
2 : to talk with another in a sensible way so as to influence his or her actions or opinions "It's a fear you can't be … reasoned out of."— Kate DiCamillo, The Tale of Despereaux
3 : to state or ask logically How, I reasoned, could such a thing happen?

reason

noun
rea·​son

Legal Definition of reason

1 : an underlying ground, justification, purpose, motive, or inducement required to provide reasons for the termination in writing
2a : the faculty of comprehending, inferring, or distinguishing especially in a fair and orderly way
b : the proper and sane exercise of the mind

More from Merriam-Webster on reason

Nglish: Translation of reason for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of reason for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about reason

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