From Biology-Online Dictionary | Biology-Online Dictionary


1. Assent to a proposition or affirmation, or the acceptance of a fact, opinion, or assertion as real or true, without immediate personal knowledge; reliance upon word or testimony; partial or full assurance without positive knowledge or absolute certainty; persuasion; conviction; confidence; as, belief of a witness; the belief of our senses. Belief admits of all degrees, from the slightest suspicion to the fullest assurance. (Reid)

2. A persuasion of the truths of religion; faith. No man can attain [to] belief by the bare contemplation of heaven and earth. (Hooker)

3. The thing believed; the object of belief. Superstitious prophecies are not only the belief of fools, but the talk sometimes of wise men. (Bacon)

4. A tenet, or the body of tenets, held by the advocates of any class of views; doctrine; creed. In the heat of persecution to which Christian belief was subject upon its first promulgation. (Hooker) ultimate belief, a first principle incapable of proof; an intuitive truth; an intuition.

Synonym: Credence, trust, reliance, assurance, opinion.

Origin: oe. Bileafe, bileve; cf. As. Geleafa. See believe.