theory (n.)

15世纪90年代,"观念、心理计划",来自拉丁语晚期 theoria (杰罗姆),来自希腊语 theōria "沉思、推测;一种看、观看;一种景象、表演、奇观、所看的事物",来自 theōrein "考虑、推测、看",来自 theōros "旁观者",来自 thea "一种观点"(见 theater )+ horan "看",这可能来自PIE根 *wer- (3)"感知"。

更早的这种意义是 theorical (n.),15世纪末"一门科学或艺术的原则或方法"(而不是其实践)的意义最早记载于1610年代(如 music theory ,这是音乐创作的科学,除了实践或表演)。"基于观察和推理的可理解的解释"的意义来自1630年代。

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Definitions of theory from WordNet

theory (n.)
a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world; an organized system of accepted knowledge that applies in a variety of circumstances to explain a specific set of phenomena;
true in fact and theory
theory (n.)
a tentative insight into the natural world; a concept that is not yet verified but that if true would explain certain facts or phenomena;
he proposed a fresh theory of alkalis that later was accepted in chemical practices
a scientific hypothesis that survives experimental testing becomes a scientific theory
Synonyms: hypothesis / possibility
theory (n.)
a belief that can guide behavior;
they killed him on the theory that dead men tell no tales
the architect has a theory that more is less