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as in: a study to test her hypothesis Define
a seemingly reasonable, but unproven, idea based upon known facts -- often an idea to be tested
  • The study will test the hypothesis that a good marriage is more important than a higher income when measuring happiness.
  • He hypothesized the existence of Pluto before its discovery.

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  • the hypothesis here proven may be described simply in the following terms: artificially increased intelligence deteriorates at a rate of time directly proportional to the quantity of the increase.
    Daniel Keyes  --  Flowers for Algernon
  • ["short man’s complex" or "unresolved Oedipal conflict"]  Although there may be some truth in both hypotheses, this sort of posthumous off-the-rack psychoanalysis is a dubious, highly speculative enterprise that inevitably demeans and trivializes the absent analysand.
    Jon Krakauer  --  Into the Wild
  • In a letter to a friend he wrote, "I began my adult life with the hypothesis that it would be possible to become a Stone Age native."
    Jon Krakauer  --  Into the Wild
  • Rosellini appeared to accept the failure of his hypothesis with equanimity.
    Jon Krakauer  --  Into the Wild
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as in: Let's assume hypothetically that Define
something that may not be true, but that is temporarily treated as true to advance a discussion or to further investigation
  • For the purpose of discussion, let’s accept that the hypothesis that she is guilty is true. What would we have expected her to do after the incident?
  • Hypothetically speaking, if the company did downside and you lost your job, what would you do?

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  • Instead of talking about her specific situation, I asked her to consider a hypothetical situation with similar circumstances. It helped her to keep emotions under control as she thought about everyone’s point-of-view.
  • Hypothetically speaking, if the stock market is efficient, we would expect indexed mutual funds to perform as well as managed mutual funds, but with less overhead.
  • Actually, there are several options for your hypothetical future recovery scenario, should we proceed any further.
    John Corey Whaley  --  Nogin
  • Options for My Hypothetical Future Recovery Scenario (Abridged):
    John Corey Whaley  --  Nogin
  • Personal Reactions to Options for My Hypothetical Future Recovery Scenario (Abridged):
    John Corey Whaley  --  Nogin
  • "Getting you a date to prom is so hard that the hypothetical idea itself is actually used to cut diamonds," I added.
    John Green  --  Paper Towns
  • Hypothetically speaking.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Mark of Athena
  • That’s just a hypothetical reason.
    John Green  --  Looking for Alaska

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  • I’d been speaking hypothetically about moving to New York a year early.
    Jeannette Walls  --  The Glass Castle
  • You and I both know how hypothetical this solution is.
    James Dashner  --  The Kill Order
  • He started talking a lot about his hypothetical new bird book, and whenever the subject came up I did my best to encourage him and sound interested.
    Ransom Riggs  --  Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children
  • Camila’s business plan for a Victoria’s Secret competitor, for example, was entertaining but highly hypothetical and totally unrelated to what she might be doing when she got out of this human warehouse in five years.
    Piper Kerman  --  Orange Is the New Black
  • She offered hypothetical situations that might come to pass and asked how they’d be handled by the staff and director; she asked how many times Gabby would be turned in the course of a day, so as to prevent bedsores.
    Nicholas Sparks  --  The Choice
  • "Hypothetically" "I’m saying that, hypothetically, I wouldn’t do it."
    Patrick Rothfuss  --  The Name of the Wind
  • But that was hypothetical.
    Holly Goldberg Sloan  --  Counting by 7s
  • "Then I’d say whatever you’re involved in is way beyond a hypothetical."
    David Baldacci  --  Zero Day
  • This hypothetical optimism gave the poor girl a pang.
    Henry James  --  Washington Square
  • Of course the dilemma was purely hypothetical; since he wasn’t a blackguard Polish nobleman, it was absurd to speculate what his wife’s rights would be if he WERE.
    Edith Wharton  --  The Age of Innocence
  • The twin breathing orifices on either cheek-if those fluted, basalt curves could be called cheeks-emitted the faintest of whistles as Karellen’s hypothetical lungs laboured in the thin air of Earth.
    Arthur C. Clarke  --  Childhood’s End
  • Then their eyes met, and they shook hands like cronies in a tavern, and Jude saw the absurdity of quarrelling on such a hypothetical subject, and she the silliness of crying about what was written in an old book like the Bible.
    Thomas Hardy  --  Jude the Obscure
  • "So the D-6 in use on the deceased’s boat could have— hypothetically, since it was identical—made a perfect spare for the defendant’s batteries?"
    David Guterson  --  Snow Falling on Cedars
  • "A hypothetical case," Eve began and waited for Mira’s nod.
    J.D. Robb  --  Naked in Death
  • If it had been found, they would have checked everyone in his hypothetical circle, wouldn’t they?
    Stephen King  --  Misery
  • If the hypothetical man was friendly, and if she was anxious to get her son home, she might have accepted.
    Stephen King  --  Cujo
  • Mrs. Grose looked straight out of the window, but I felt that, hypothetically, I had a right to know what young persons engaged for Bly were expected to do.
    Henry James  --  The Turn of the Screw
  • But it’s a hypothetical question.
    Robert A. Heinlein  --  Tunnel In the Sky
  • … On the basis of Mo’s on-the-spot evaluation of that hypothetical profile-which he hours later suspected was no more hypothetical than Campbell’s soup-an innocent amnesiac was nearly blown away in a government ambush on New York’s Seventy-first Street.
    Robert Ludlum  --  The Bourne Ultimatum
  • All the talk about dolphins, all my reading, speculating, including a long philosophical dissertation on their hypothetical dreamsongs as a religio-diagogical form of Indus, for what?
    Roger Zelazny  --  My Name is Legion
  • Oh well, this is purely hypothetical at this point, anyway.
    Stephenie Meyer  --  New Moon
  • Some of you have probably jumped ahead and are already at the place where you realize this happened to us, and I’m not just rattling on hypothetically, so good on ya!
    James Patterson  --  Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports
  • I assure you, not a single piece of hypothetical data has been used for this ’cartoon,’ as you call it.
    Ted Dekker  --  Red: The Heroic Rescue
  • For real resignation, at the same moment, to a dozen different and hypothetical fates, is almost impossible, and the Enemy does not greatly assist those who are trying to attain it: resignation to present and actual suffering, even where that suffering consists of fear, is far easier and is usually helped by this direct action.
    C.S. Lewis  --  The Screwtape Letters
  • Let’s say, for example, I am trying to teach you how not to hide inside of lies, hypothetically of course," she said with a wink.
    William P. Young  --  The Shack
  • There were endless discussions during the afternoon college hours about the problem of dual loyalty—what sort of allegiance could an American Jew have toward a foreign Jewish state?—and invariably these arguments revolved around this hypothetical question: On what side would an American Jew fight should America ever declare war against a Jewish state? I always answered that the question was silly, America would never send Jews to fight against a Jewish state; during the Second World…
    Chaim Potok  --  The Chosen
  • Their cosmography was but an extension of the largely hypothetical geography of the tune.
    Dante Alighieri  --  Dante’s Inferno
  • The sight of real money in full amount, in answer to a challenge for the same till then deemed slightly hypothetical had a great effect upon the spectators.
    Thomas Hardy  --  The Mayor of Casterbridge
  • If so, I decline to be witness at the trial ……What was the last hypothetical devil mentioned?’
    Rudyard Kipling  --  Kim
  • This hypothetical computer is soon going to send you a hypothetical email.
    Stieg Larsson  --  The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest
  • Martin and Janice aren’t hypothetical examples dreamed up by some marketing department.
    Sophie Kinsella  --  Confessoins of a Shopaholic
  • Hypothetically.
    Ted Dekker  --  BoneMan’s Daughters
  • It’s supposed to be easier to suffer for hypothetical people too, for Hecubas.
    Saul Bellow  --  The Adventures of Augie March
  • …bags, about three promenades a day, about—it was difficult to say, difficult to enumerate all the things people down there did not know about; but the notion that Joachim, after having spent more than a year and a half up here, would now be living among such ignorant people, that notion, which applied only to Joachim—and merely from a great distance and only quite hypothetically to himself—so confused Hans Castorp that he closed his eyes and dismissed it with a gesture of his hand.
    Thomas Mann  --  The Magic Mountain
  • Perry Mason, A Not-so-hypothetical Indictment, and had been in progress for as long as the TV show had been on the air.
    Thomas Pynchon  --  The Crying of Lot 49
  • During our talk I made a hypothetical statement that summed up my attitude toward God and the suffering in the world, a statement that stemmed from my knowledge of life as I had lived, seen, felt, and suffered it in terms of dread, fear, hunger, terror, and loneliness.
    Richard Wright  --  Black Boy
  • What’s more, by your own account, it’s likely the construction of this hypothetical tunnel was never completed in the first place.
    Christopher Paolini  --  Inheritance
  • I believe, sir, that we have had this conversation, here in this N cry Hall, albeit then in a hypothetical context.
    Geraldine Brooks  --  Year of Wonders
  • She looked like a tourist who’d asked for directions to a place she thought was simple enough to get to only to hear a series of hypothetical turns, alleys, one-way streets.
    ZZ Packer  --  Drinking Coffee Elsewhere
  • And when X is between 1 and 3, thepopulation gets bigger and then it stays stable like this (and these graphs are hypothetical, too).
    Mark Haddon  --  The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
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  • LOGICIAN: It’s stated in the hypothesis.
    Eugene Ionesco  --  Rhinoceros
  • When you are finished getting your group therapy sessions, safe-sex lectures, and 12-step sermons, you may be able to test the hypothesis.
    Piper Kerman  --  Orange Is the New Black

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  • In time "Hillari’s Hypothesis" (so called by Kevin) about Stargirl’s origins gave way to other theories.
    Jerry Spinelli  --  Stargirl
  • The only thing I could see against that hypothesis was the presence of bodies under the Altar Stone and cremated remains in the Z holes.
    Diana Gabaldon  --  Outlander
  • Not five times in five years do I have students who understand craftsmanship and precision and maybe some big imagination in hypotheses.
    Sinclair Lewis  --  Arrowsmith
  • Figuring out how they re connected may take a while, but let’s just go with the hypothesis that they are, and say, what if.
    Nora Roberts  --  Blood Brothers
  • This absurd jealousy, grounded as it was in mere hypotheses, proved that he considered her fidelity an unconditional postulate of their relationship.
    Milan Kundera  --  The Unbearable Lightness of Being
  • "A test programming by trial hypothesis," he agreed.
    Robert A. Heinlein  --  The Moon is a Harsh Mistress
  • The hypothesis of a drifting islet or an elusive reef, put forward by people not quite in their right minds, was completely eliminated.
    Jules Verne  --  Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
  • Let’s take it as a working hypothesis that Bjurman raped her and she somehow took her revenge.
    Stieg Larsson  --  The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest

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  • They’re hypotheses about criminals.
    Ted Dekker  --  BoneMan’s Daughters
  • He did not like that his Mystics instructor was sharing her hypothesis that Max might be Cuchulain reborn.
    Henry H. Neff  --  The Second Siege
  • This second day proved a hypothesis formulated quickly and haphazardly on the first day.
    Pat Conroy  --  The Water is Wide
  • But we are bound to exhaust all other hypotheses before falling back upon this one.
    Arthur Conan Doyle  --  The Hound of the Baskervilles
  • And if we take this as a working hypothesis we have a fresh basis from which to start our construction of this unknown visitor.
    Arthur Conan Doyle  --  The Hound of the Baskervilles
  • Mr. Mallory’s human figures would have been very fine were it not for the hypothesis that God created the world and the human form.
    Ayn Rand  --  The Fountainhead
  • We have here a hypothesis of the First and the Second Murderer, as the great Shakespeare would put it.
    Agatha Christie  --  Murder On The Orient Express
  • Upon either hypothesis—insolence or despair—I felt I could be of no use to him.
    Joseph Conrad  --  Lord Jim
  • The Jehovah hypothesis tires me, Bishop.
    Victor Hugo  --  Les Miserables
  • Kassad decided that it was time to quit hypothesizing and to get moving.
    Dan Simmons  --  Hyperion
  • And so I asked lots of data-seeking questions, and found myself hypothesizing along with my doctors.
    Randy Pausch  --  The Last Lecture
  • What we are attempting is a hypothesis in which I answer for him, while you ask me questions.
    Tom Stoppard  --  Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead
  • No, sir, I shall approach this case from the point of view that what this young man says is true, and we shall see whither that hypothesis will lead us.
    Arthur Conan Doyle  --  The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
  • "Is it the tipsy-cake, then?" said Maggie, exerting her hypothetic powers, while she leaned forward toward Tom with her eyes fixed on the hovering knife.
    George Eliot  --  The Mill on the Floss
  • A ten milligram sample-the volume of a grain of sand-is hypothesized to hold as much energy as about two hundred metric tons of conventional rocket fuel.
    Dan Brown  --  Angels & Demons
  • Neither did those who lived three hundred years ago, when America was first discovered, leave any accounts from which even an hypothesis could be formed.
    Alexis de Toqueville  --  Democracy In America, Volume 1
  • And it furnishes a rule for interpreting the Constitution—within the Constitution—that justifies my position and refutes every hypothesis to the contrary.
    Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, & John Jay  --  The Federalist Papers — Modern English Edition 2
  • An alluring hypothesis.
    Thomas Mann  --  The Magic Mountain
  • Any schoolboy can do experiments in the physics laboratory to test various scientific hypotheses.
    Milan Kundera  --  The Unbearable Lightness of Being
  • All these hypotheses seemed extremely plausible to me, and to hope for freedom through use of force, you had to be a harpooner.
    Jules Verne  --  Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
  • Now then, although the latter hypothesis was completely admissible, it couldn’t stand up to inquiries conducted in both the New World and the Old.
    Jules Verne  --  Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
  • A serious study of the soil was necessary to negative or confirm my hypothesis.
    Jules Verne  --  A Journey to the Center of the Earth
  • Supposing that anything happened to our young friend here—you will forgive the unpleasant hypothesis!
    Arthur Conan Doyle  --  The Hound of the Baskervilles
  • And so I omit all the hypotheses.
    Fyodor Dostoyevsky  --  The Brothers Karamazov
  • You think of as many hypotheses as you can, then you design experiments to test them to see which are true and which are false.
    Robert M. Pirsig  --  Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
  • But no; Tom had never heard that these measures would brighten the understanding, or strengthen the verbal memory; and he was not given to hypothesis and experiment.
    George Eliot  --  The Mill on the Floss
  • I’ll spare you the innumerable hypotheses with which we’ve tried to explain this inexplicable phenomenon, whose secret is yours alone.
    Jules Verne  --  Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
  • But this hypothesis of a war machine collapsed in the face of formal denials from the various governments.
    Jules Verne  --  Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
  • Single Man Hypothesis (Odd Man Hypothesis), page 255.
    Michael Crichton  --  The Andromeda Strain
  • He then sets up hypotheses for these and tests them.
    Robert M. Pirsig  --  Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
  • He is testing a hypothesis by putting the question to nature.
    Robert M. Pirsig  --  Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
  • There had been great pressure from Defense and the AEC to accept Hall, since those groups believed in the Odd Man Hypothesis; in the end, Stone and the others had given in.
    Michael Crichton  --  The Andromeda Strain
  • It must be, if the nebular hypothesis has any truth, older than our world; and long before this earth ceased to be molten, life upon its surface must have begun its course.
    H.G. Wells  --  The War of the Worlds
  • Nor is this an empty hypothesis: a despot may find that it is his interest to render his subjects equal and to leave them ignorant, in order more easily to keep them slaves.
    Alexis de Toqueville  --  Democracy In America, Volume 2
  • Local police ignored the obvious evidence that the death-was a hate crime and hypothesized that Donald must have been involved in drug dealing, which his mother adamantly denied.
    Bryan Stevenson  --  Just Mercy
  • Single Man Hypothesis (Odd Man Hypothesis), page 255.
    Michael Crichton  --  The Andromeda Strain
  • The formation of hypotheses is the most mysterious of all the categories of scientific method.
    Robert M. Pirsig  --  Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
  • In the hypothesis.
    Eugene Ionesco  --  Rhinoceros
  • A hypothesis.
    Mark Helprin  --  A Soldier of the Great War
  • I could stand it no longer; so I determined at last to submit the whole case to my uncle, in the most adroit manner possible, and under the form of some totally irreconcilable hypothesis.
    Jules Verne  --  A Journey to the Center of the Earth
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