December 07, 2012
- deduce (verb)
- What does it mean?
- 1 : to trace the cause or origin of2 a : to draw (a conclusion) necessarily from given information b : to determine by reasoning from a general principle
- How do you use it?
- Kiki has a good eye for details and is careful to consider all of the answer choices, so she almost always deduces the right answer to the Buzzword quizzes.
- Are you a word wiz?
If you trace the origin of "deduce," you'll find the Latin root "ducere." Can you deduce what "ducere" means?You were led down the right path if you chose B; "ducere" means "to lead." The Latin prefix "de-" added to "ducere" gave Latin speakers "deducere," meaning "to lead away." "Deducere" came into English by way of Middle English in the 15th century. Can you come up with any relatives of "deduce"? Look for words ending in "-duce"; they are likely to have "ducere" as their root. Here are two examples to get you started: "induce" (meaning "persuade, influence" or "bring about") and "adduce" (meaning "to offer as example, reason, or proof").