Other forms: conjectures; conjectured; conjecturing

Can you guess what conjecture means? It's a word to use when you are not sure of something and have to "guess or surmise."

You can see how the word conjecture means that you create a theory or opinion about something without basing it in fact because the original definition of conjecture, from Old French, is "interpretation of signs and omens." Since signs and omens are pretty subjective, it makes sense that the word would then move to its current meaning. However, even though it only seems like weather reports are conjectures, they are actually based on evidence!

Definitions of conjecture
  1. verb
    believe especially on uncertain or tentative grounds
    synonyms: hypothecate, hypothesise, hypothesize, speculate, suppose, theorise, theorize
    see moresee less
    show 5 types...
    hide 5 types...
    construct, reconstruct, retrace
    reassemble mentally
    develop, explicate, formulate
    elaborate, as of theories and hypotheses
    etymologise, etymologize
    construct the history of words
    develop and work out fully in one's mind
    redevelop, reformulate
    formulate or develop again, of an improved theory or hypothesis
    type of:
    anticipate, expect
    regard something as probable or likely
  2. noun
    reasoning that involves the formation of conclusions from incomplete evidence
    see moresee less
    show 5 types...
    hide 5 types...
    theorisation, theorization
    the production or use of theories
    supposal, supposition
    the cognitive process of supposing
    imaginary or visionary theorization
    the act of presupposing; a supposition made prior to having knowledge (as for the purpose of argument)
    abstraction, generalisation, generalization
    the process of formulating general concepts by abstracting common properties of instances
    type of:
    abstract thought, logical thinking, reasoning
    thinking that is coherent and logical
  3. noun
    a hypothesis that has been formed by speculating or conjecturing (usually with little hard evidence)
    “he dismissed it as mere conjecture
    synonyms: speculation
    see moresee less
    type of:
    hypothesis, possibility, theory
    a tentative insight into the natural world; a concept that is not yet verified but that if true would explain certain facts or phenomena
  4. noun
    a message expressing an opinion based on incomplete evidence
    synonyms: guess, hypothesis, speculation, supposition, surmisal, surmise
    see moresee less
    successful conjecture by unusual insight or good luck
    type of:
    opinion, view
    a message expressing a belief about something; the expression of a belief that is held with confidence but not substantiated by positive knowledge or proof
Cite this entry
  • MLA
  • APA
  • Chicago

Copy citation
DISCLAIMER: These example sentences appear in various news sources and books to reflect the usage of the word ‘conjecture'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of or its editors. Send us feedback
Word Family

Look up conjecture for the last time

Close your vocabulary gaps with personalized learning that focuses on teaching the words you need to know.

VocabTrainer -'s Vocabulary Trainer