Definition of postulate in English:



Pronunciation /ˈpäsCHəˌlāt//ˈpɑstʃəˌleɪt/
  • 1Suggest or assume the existence, fact, or truth of (something) as a basis for reasoning, discussion, or belief.

    ‘his theory postulated a rotatory movement for hurricanes’
    with clause ‘he postulated that the environmentalists might have a case’
    • ‘Considering all such factors, there seems no compelling reason to postulate the existence of a hitherto unknown creature in Lake Champlain.’
    • ‘We also postulated that there could be different protein isoforms that correlated with these temporal and spatial transcripts.’
    • ‘A second theory postulates that when melatonin levels are depressed, female hormones are increased.’
    • ‘My reason for writing this is not to postulate a gloom-and-doom scenario but to suggest that we be prepared to react to an enemy game plan that may be different from our own.’
    • ‘Conserved residues within the compact protein cores have been postulated to be critical for protein folding.’
    • ‘Many philosophers treat the beliefs and desires postulated by folk psychology as brain states with symbolic contents.’
    • ‘This effect was postulated to provide a basis for the toxicity of such compounds.’
    • ‘Weber, like Bergson, stopped just short of postulating the existence of the unconscious.’
    • ‘The radical scavenging mechanism postulated above could, therefore, be another mechanism of action.’
    • ‘She noted, moreover, that these laws sometimes provide good grounds for claims about the existence of the causal entities postulated by a theory.’
    • ‘Attachment theory postulates that bonds with parents have an important bearing on future relationships.’
    • ‘Another reason for postulating the existence of such superstructures is some evidence of anomalous membrane roughness suggested by studies of membrane adhesion.’
    • ‘On this basis, we have postulated two scenarios for the future of energy.’
    • ‘Early Greek science postulated the existence of a primordial element as the foundation of the material universe.’
    • ‘The authors postulated that this decrease is likely to be multifactorial.’
    • ‘Some researchers postulate that reserves of liquid water still exist underground.’
    • ‘As a result, researchers now postulate that serotonin may have a role in regulating prolactin secretion.’
    • ‘The authors postulated that the reasons might have had something to do with productivity.’
    • ‘Furthermore, the model postulates that individuals vary in their propensity for both excitation and inhibition.’
    • ‘Thus, the theory postulates that inertial and gravitational masses are fundamentally the same thing.’
    put forward, suggest, advance, posit, hypothesize, take as a hypothesis, propose, assume, presuppose, suppose, presume, predicate, take for granted, theorize
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  • 2(in ecclesiastical law) nominate or elect (someone) to an ecclesiastical office subject to the sanction of a higher authority.


Pronunciation /ˈpɑstʃələt//ˈpäsCHələt/
  • 1A thing suggested or assumed as true as the basis for reasoning, discussion, or belief.

    ‘perhaps the postulate of Babylonian influence on Greek astronomy is incorrect’
    • ‘The barium-flame-colour generalization is a deductive consequence of the postulates of atomic theory.’
    • ‘Nevertheless, Kant accepted the traditional claims of theology, and even tried to resuscitate them under the obscure doctrine of the postulates of practical reason.’
    • ‘But this is not to suggest that Hebb's influence was just his postulates related to synaptic change.’
    • ‘On Russell's view, the knowing involved in knowledge of the postulates is a kind of animal knowing, which arises as habitual beliefs from the experience of interaction with the world.’
    • ‘There are still tons of unanswered questions in the field of infectious disease, and as we learn more, we find it's not always as simple and straightforward as Koch's postulates suggest.’
    hypothesis, thesis, conjecture, supposition, speculation, postulation, postulate, proposition, premise, surmise, assumption, presumption, presupposition, notion, guess, hunch, feeling, suspicion
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    1. 1.1Mathematics An assumption used as a basis for mathematical reasoning.
      • ‘The work of Bolyai and Lobachevsky are comparable in that sense, that they both challenge axiomatic assumptions, but their postulates are of Euclidean geometry.’
      • ‘Since Euclid's axiomatic formulation of geometry mathematicians had been trying to prove his fifth postulate as a theorem deduced from the other four axioms.’
      • ‘In the same sense that a Cartesian geometry specifies certain axioms, definitions, and postulates as the basis for a formal geometry, an ivory-tower geometry.’
      • ‘In his work on proofs of the parallel postulate, al-Nayrizi quotes work by a mathematician named Aghanis.’
      • ‘As we saw in Chapter 6, 2-4, the plan to identify each branch of mathematics with a single postulate system failed, at least when it comes to describing deductive mathematical practice.’
      • ‘Now the problem which had perplexed Bolyai most in his study of mathematics had been the independence of Euclid's Fifth postulate.’


Late Middle English (in postulate (sense 2 of the verb)): from Latin postulat- ‘asked’, from the verb postulare.