- outwardly appearing as such; professed; pretended: an ostensible cheerfulness concealing sadness.
- apparent, evident, or conspicuous: the ostensible truth of their theories.
- (sentence modifier) apparently; seemingly
- apparent; seeming
adv.1765, from ostensible + -ly (2). adj.1762, “capable of being shown, presentable,” from French ostensible, from Latin ostens-, past participle stem of ostendere “to show, expose to view; to stretch out, spread before; exhibit, display,” from ob “in front of” (see ob-) + tendere “to stretch” (see tenet). Meaning “apparent, professed” is from 1771.