WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2015
pos•tu•late /v. ˈpɑstʃəˌleɪt; n. -lɪt, -ˌleɪt/USA pronunciation v., -lat•ed, -lat•ing,n. 

  • to suggest or assume the existence or truth of (something), esp. as a basis for further reasoning: [+ object]She postulated an increase in population and went on from there to form a theory of population change.[+ that clause]began by postulating that good and evil exist in all people.

  • n. [countable]
  • something assumed to be true and used as a basis for reasoning:a postulate that human beings were created for a purpose.
  • pos•tu•la•tion /ˌpɑstʃəˈleɪʃən/USA pronunciationn. [uncountable]

    Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

    postulate vb /ˈpɒstjʊˌleɪt/(tr; may take a clause as object)
    1. to assume to be true or existent; take for granted
    2. to ask, demand, or claim
    3. to nominate (a person) to a post or office subject to approval by a higher authority
    n /ˈpɒstjʊlɪt/
    1. something taken as self-evident or assumed as the basis of an argument
    2. a necessary condition or prerequisite
    3. a fundamental principle
    4. an unproved and indemonstrable statement that should be taken for granted: used as an initial premise or underlying hypothesis in a process of reasoning
    Etymology: 16th Century: from Latin postulāre to ask for, require; related to pōscere to request

    ˌpostuˈlation n

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