Etymology
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infer (v.)
in logic, "to 'bring in' as a conclusion of a process of reasoning," 1520s, from Latin inferre "bring into, carry in; deduce, infer, conclude, draw an inference; bring against," from in- "in" (from PIE root *en "in") + ferre "to carry, to bear," from PIE root *bher- (1) "to carry; to bear children." General sense of "draw a conclusion" is first attested 1520s; intransitive sense is from 1570s.
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inference (n.)
1590s, "action of inferring;" 1610s, "that which is inferred;" from Medieval Latin inferentia, from Latin inferentem (nominative inferens), present participle of inferre "bring into; conclude, deduce" (see infer).
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illative (adj.)
1610s, "stating or introducing an inference" (of words such as because, then, therefore); 1630s, "inferential, arising from inference," from Late Latin illativus, from Latin illatus "brought in," used as past participle of inferre "to bring in, introduce" (see infer). Grammatical sense "case expressing motion into" is from 1890. As a noun from 1590s, "illative word." Related: Illation "action of inferring" (1530s).
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imply (v.)
late 14c., implien, emplien "to enfold, enwrap, entangle" (the classical Latin sense), from Old French emplier, from Latin implicare "involve, enfold, entangle," from assimilated form of in- "into, in, on, upon" (from PIE root *en "in") + plicare "to fold" (from PIE root *plek- "to plait").

Meaning "to involve something unstated as a logical consequence" first recorded c. 1400; that of "to hint at" is from 1580s. Related: Implied; implying. The distinction between imply and infer is in "What do you imply by that remark?" but, "What am I to infer from that remark?" Or, as Century Dictionary puts it, "An action implies ability or preparation, but involves consequences."
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*bher- (1)

Proto-Indo-European root meaning "to carry," also "to bear children."

It forms all or part of: Aberdeen; amphora; anaphora; aquifer; auriferous; bairn; barrow (n.1) "frame for carrying a load;" bear (v.); bearing; Berenice; bier; birth; bring; burden (n.1) "a load;" carboniferous; Christopher; chromatophore; circumference; confer; conference; conifer; cumber; cumbersome; defer (v.2) "yield;" differ; difference; differentiate; efferent; esophagus; euphoria; ferret; fertile; Foraminifera; forbear (v.); fossiliferous; furtive; indifferent; infer; Inverness; Lucifer; metaphor; odoriferous; offer; opprobrium; overbear; paraphernalia; periphery; pestiferous; pheromone; phoresy; phosphorus; Porifera; prefer; proffer; proliferation; pyrophoric; refer; reference; semaphore; somniferous; splendiferous; suffer; transfer; vociferate; vociferous.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit bharati "he carries, brings," bhrtih "a bringing, maintenance;" Avestan baraiti "carries;" Old Persian barantiy "they carry;" Armenian berem "I carry;" Greek pherein "to carry," pherne "dowry;" Latin ferre "to bear, carry," fors (genitive fortis) "chance, luck," perhaps fur "a thief;" Old Irish beru/berim "I catch, I bring forth," beirid "to carry;" Old Welsh beryt "to flow;" Gothic bairan "to carry;" Old English and Old High German beran, Old Norse bera "barrow;" Old Church Slavonic birati "to take;" Russian brat' "to take," bremya "a burden," beremennaya "pregnant."

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ratiocinate (v.)

"to reason, from two judgments to infer a third," 1640s, from Latin ratiocinatus, past participle of ratiocinari "to reckon, compute, calculate; to deliberate, meditate; to reason, argue, infer" (see ratiocination). "Now rare in serious use" [OED]. Related: Ratiocinant; ratiocinative; ratiocinatory.

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surmise (v.)
c. 1400, in law, "to charge, allege," from Old French surmis, past participle of surmettre "to accuse," from sur- "upon" (see sur- (1)) + mettre "put," from Latin mittere "to send" (see mission). Meaning "to infer conjecturally" is recorded from 1700, from the noun. Related: Surmised; surmising.
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inductive (adj.)
early 15c., "bringing on, inducing," from Old French inductif or directly from Late Latin inductivus "serving to induce or infer," from induct-, past participle stem of Latin inducere (see induce). As a term in logic, "based on induction" (q.v.), from 1764. Related: Inductively.
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conjecture (v.)

early 15c., "infer, predict, form (an opinion or notion) upon probabilities or slight evidence," from conjecture (n.) or from verbs in Medieval Latin and Old French. Middle English had also the parallel forms conjecte (n.), conjecten (v.). Related: Conjectured; conjecturing.

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deductible (adj.)

1856, "capable of being withdrawn," especially from one's taxes or income, with -ible + Latin deducere "lead down, derive" (in Medieval Latin, "infer logically"), from de "down" (see de-) + ducere "to lead" (from PIE root *deuk- "to lead"). As a noun, "amount of a loss which must be borne by the policy-holder in an insurance claim," by 1927. The older adjective is deducible (1610s).

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