Definition of argument in English:


Line breaks: ar¦gu|ment
Pronunciation: /ˈɑːgjʊm(ə)nt


  • 3 Mathematics & Logic An independent variable associated with a function or proposition and determining its value. For example, in the expression y = F(x1, x2), the arguments of the function F are x1 and x2, and the value is y.
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    • Abel's theorem states that any such sum can be expressed as a fixed number p of these integrals, with integration arguments that are algebraic functions of the original arguments.
    • With Davenport he showed that any real indefinite diagonal quadratic form, in 5 or more variables, takes arbitrarily small values for nonzero integral arguments.
    • I.e., in the equation, x + y = z, x and y are the arguments to the addition function, and z is the value.
  • 5 Linguistics Any of the noun phrases in a clause that are related directly to the verb, typically the subject, direct object, and indirect object.
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    • It does not contain a semantic predicate, either, because the anaphor is not an argument of the verb.
    • Section 3 shows that the operation ARG allows a satisfying analysis of prefixes and particles that introduce new arguments to the verb.
    • This paper focuses on the semantics of implicit arguments and compares it with that of explicit indefinites.


for the sake of argument

As a basis for discussion or reasoning: suppose, for the sake of argument, that this is the legal position
More example sentences
  • Let us suppose, just for the sake of argument, that some big-time editor reads a self-published novel and decides to offer the writer a two-book contract on the strength of it.
  • Suppose, however, for the sake of argument, that he lied.
  • Let us suppose, for the sake of argument, that this guard did in fact stop to think things over carefully.


Middle English (in the sense 'process of reasoning'): via Old French from Latin argumentum, from arguere 'make clear, prove, accuse'.

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