reason - definition and synonyms


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  1. 1
    [countable] a fact, situation, or intention that explains why something happened, why someone did something, or why something is true
    reason for:

    The police asked her the reason for her visit.

    reason for doing something:

    Could you explain your reasons for choosing this particular course?

    reason why:

    The reason why so many people caught the disease is still not clear.

    reason (that):

    The reason these cars are so expensive is that they are largely built by hand.

    for a reason:

    The woman cannot be named for legal reasons.

    give a reason:

    Our application was rejected, but the council gave no reason for its decision.

    for the simple/obvious/good reason (that):

    We can’t take you all, for the simple reason that there isn’t enough room in the car.

  2. 2
    [uncountable] a good or clear cause for doing something or thinking something
    reason for:

    With plenty of orders coming in, there is reason for optimism about the company’s future.

    reason to do something:

    Is there any reason to believe that she isn’t telling the truth?

    there is every reason to do something (=there are very clear reasons):

    There was every reason to expect that he would agree.

    with reason/not without reason:

    He has refused to pay, not without reason.

    have no reason to do something:

    She has no reason to shout at you.

    see no reason/not see any reason (=when there is no obvious reason why something should happen):

    I can’t see any reason for refusing their invitation.

  3. 3
    [uncountable] a way of behaving that most people accept as sensible

    She had reason on her side.

    listen to/see reason:

    He finally saw reason and gave me the gun.

    reason prevails (=wins):

    Fortunately, reason prevailed and she did not marry him.

    within reason (=according to what is sensible):

    Let your children have their freedom, within reason.

See also