Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “ostensible”

ostensible

adjective [before noun] uk   /ɒsˈten.sɪ.bl̩/ us    /ɑːˈsten-/ formal
appearing or claiming to be one thing when it is really something else: Their ostensible goal was to clean up government corruption, but their real aim was to unseat the government.
ostensibly
adverb uk   /-bli/ us  
He has spent the past three months in Florida, ostensibly for medical treatment, but in actual fact to avoid prosecution.
(Definition of ostensible from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of ostensible?
Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Seeming and purporting to be, but you might be interested in these topics from the Being and existing topic area:

Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “ostensible” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

first:

(a person or thing) coming before all others in order, time, amount, quality, or importance

Word of the Day

Countability – grammar codes

by Dom Glennon​​,
November 26, 2014
Advices and informations Have you ever noticed strange codes in square brackets on entries in Cambridge Dictionaries Online and wondered what they mean? These are grammar codes, giving you a brief summary of how that word behaves grammatically. More information can be obtained by hovering your cursor over the code, and there’s

Read More 

ped-text verb

November 24, 2014
to text someone while walking I’m ped-texting, I’m looking down at my phone, 75 percent of the time.

Read More