assume [uh-soom] ExamplesWord Origin See more synonyms for assume on verb (used with object), as·sumed, as·sum·ing.

  1. to take for granted or without proof: to assume that everyone wants peace.
  2. to take upon oneself; undertake: to assume an obligation.
  3. to take over the duties or responsibilities of: to assume the office of treasurer.
  4. to take on (a particular character, quality, mode of life, etc.); adopt: He assumed the style of an aggressive go-getter.
  5. to take on; be invested or endowed with: The situation assumed a threatening character.
  6. to pretend to have or be; feign: to assume a humble manner.
  7. to appropriate or arrogate; seize; usurp: to assume a right to oneself; to assume control.
  8. to take upon oneself (the debts or obligations of another).
  9. Archaic. to take into relation or association; adopt.

verb (used without object), as·sumed, as·sum·ing.

  1. to take something for granted; presume.

Origin of assume 1400–50; late Middle English (Anglo-French assumer) Latin assūmere to take to, adopt, equivalent to as- as- + sūmere to take up; see consume Related formsas·sum·er, nouno·ver·as·sume, verb (used with object), o·ver·as·sumed, o·ver·as·sum·ing.pre·as·sume, verb (used with object), pre·as·sumed, pre·as·sum··as·sume, verb (used with object), re·as·sumed, re·as·sum·ing.Synonym study 6. assume, Pretend, affect, feign imply an attempt to create a false appearance. To assume is to take on or put on a specific outward appearance, often (but not always) with intent to deceive: to assume an air of indifference. To pretend is to create an imaginary characteristic or to play a part: to pretend sorrow. To affect is to make a consciously artificial show of having qualities that one thinks would look well and impress others: to affect shyness. To feign implies using ingenuity in pretense, and some degree of imitation of appearance or characteristics: to feign surprise. Related Words for assume guess, consider, conclude, accept, infer, understand, expect, presume, suspect, estimate, speculate, think, begin, acquire, embrace, affect, adopt, conjecture, gather, theorize Examples from the Web for assume Contemporary Examples of assume

  • Nor should we ever assume that weather alone, however extreme, should be fatal to a commercial flight.

    Did Bad Weather Bring Down AirAsia 8501?

    Clive Irving

    December 29, 2014

  • It occurs to me that Mount must assume that Hitchcock has read it–after all, it came from him.

    Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days

    David Freeman

    December 13, 2014

  • I assume he turned something else into aspirin and black coffee the next morning.

    Keep Christmas Commercialized!

    P. J. O’Rourke

    December 6, 2014

  • We can only assume that he was, as you would expect him to be, mortified by his own inability to keep his charges under control.

    Stonewall Jackson, VMI’s Most Embattled Professor

    S. C. Gwynne

    November 29, 2014

  • Contrary to what you may assume about me, I actually enjoy the occasional trip to the mall.

    It’s Always Black Friday for Clerks

    Michael Tomasky

    November 28, 2014

  • Historical Examples of assume

  • Sympathetic persons are apt to assume that every refined emotion must be ennobling.


    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • I come before you and assume the Presidency at a moment rich with promise.

    United States Presidents’ Inaugural Speeches


  • What if Remorse should assume the features of an injured friend?

    The Haunted Mind (From “Twice Told Tales”)

    Nathaniel Hawthorne

  • “Go on before, and make a way for us,” said the doctor, with an authority he had no right to assume.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • This bantering is most pointed if we assume that Rosaline was dark rather than fair.

    The Man Shakespeare

    Frank Harris

  • British Dictionary definitions for assume assume verb (tr)

    1. (may take a clause as object) to take for granted; accept without proof; supposeto assume that someone is sane
    2. to take upon oneself; undertake or take on or over (a position, responsibility, etc)to assume office
    3. to pretend to; feignhe assumed indifference, although the news affected him deeply
    4. to take or put on; adoptthe problem assumed gigantic proportions
    5. to appropriate or usurp (power, control, etc); arrogatethe revolutionaries assumed control of the city
    6. Christianity (of God) to take up (the soul of a believer) into heaven

    Derived Formsassumable, adjectiveassumer, nounWord Origin for assume C15: from Latin assūmere to take up, from sūmere to take up, from sub- + emere to take Word Origin and History for assume v.

    early 15c., assumpten “to receive up into heaven” (especially of the Virgin Mary), also assumen “to arrogate,” from Latin assumere “to take up, take to oneself,” from ad- “to, up” (see ad-) + sumere “to take,” from sub “under” + emere “to take” (see exempt (adj.)).

    Meaning “to suppose, to take for granted as the basis of argument” is first recorded 1590s; that of “to take or put on (an appearance, etc.)” is from c.1600. Related: Assumed; assuming. Early past participle was assumpt. In rhetorical usage, assume expresses what the assumer postulates, often as a confessed hypothesis; presume expresses what the presumer really believes.

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