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English definition of “underlying”

underlying

adjective [before noun] uk   /ˌʌn.dəˈlaɪ.ɪŋ/ us    /-dɚ-/

underlying adjective [before noun] (NOT OBVIOUS)

C2 real but not immediately obvious: And what might be the underlying significance of these supposedly random acts?Digressing and being indirect or evasiveMoving in order to avoid contactNot saying much

underlying adjective [before noun] (BASED ON)

used to describe something on which something else is based: The price of the investment fell below the value of the underlying assets.Essential or necessary

underlying adjective [before noun] (UNDER)

positioned under the surface of something: The currents are affected by the shape of the underlying rocks.
(Definition of underlying from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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