# underlie

Underlie is part of the Academic Word List. It is important for students in college and university.

### Pronunciation

• IPA: /ʌndəɻ'laɪ/

## Verb

 Plain form underlie Third person singular underlies Simple past underlay Past participle underlain Present participle underlying
1. (transitive) If ${\displaystyle x}$ underlies ${\displaystyle y}$, ${\displaystyle x}$ causes ${\displaystyle y}$; ${\displaystyle x}$ is the reason for ${\displaystyle y}$.
Poor education underlies much of our crime and violence.
2. (transitive) If ${\displaystyle x}$ underlies ${\displaystyle y}$, ${\displaystyle x}$ is the basis for ${\displaystyle y}$ or the most important part of ${\displaystyle y}$.
The basic principle underlying the argument is that we can know what each of the parts is.