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- 1 a young child is unable to reasonthink rationally, think logically, use one's common sense, use one's head/brain• formal cogitate, ratiocinate
- 3 she tried to reason with her husbandbring around, coax, persuade, prevail on, convince, make someone see the light
rational relating to reason
the reason why, the reason is because
1 The construction the reason why … has been objected to on the grounds that the subordinate clause should express a statement, using a that clause, not imply a question with a why clause: the reason (that) I decided not to phone , rather than the reason why I decided not to phone . The reason why has been called a redundancy to be avoided, but it is a mild one, and idiomatic.2 An objection is also made to the construction the reason is because, as in the reason I didn't phone is because my mother has been ill . The objection is made on the grounds that either 'because' or 'the reason' is redundant; it is better to use the word that instead ( the reason I didn't phone is that … ) or rephrase altogether ( I didn't phone because … ).Nevertheless, both the above usages are well established and, although they may be inelegant, they are generally accepted in standard English.