# probability

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## Probability

The relative likelihood of a particular outcome among all possible outcomes.

## probability

the likelihood of a particular uncertain event occurring, measured on a scale from 0.0 (such an event is impossible) to 1.0 (such an event is certain to occur). People generally estimate probabilities on the basis of the relative frequency with which an event has occurred in the past, under given circumstances, and generalize from this past experience. In some circumstances it is easy to estimate the proportion of occasions on which an event occurs; for example, the probability of getting ‘heads’ when flipping a balanced coin is 0.5 because with such a coin in the long run we would get 50% ‘heads’ and 50% ‘tails’. In estimating probabilities in business situations, though, there may be no or only a few previous experiences that can be used to gauge the relative frequency of an event occurring. See also RISK AND UNCERTAINTY.
Collins Dictionary of Economics, 4th ed. © C. Pass, B. Lowes, L. Davies 2005
References in classic literature ?
Were she likely to have a home to invite her to, what a blessing it would be!
"You do not strike one," she remarked, "as the sort of person likely to lose a fortune on the race-course."
"Aye, aye, the parsonage is but a small one," said she, after the first ebullition of surprise and satisfaction was over, "and very likely MAY be out of repair; but to hear a man apologising, as I thought, for a house that to my knowledge has five sitting rooms on the ground-floor, and I think the housekeeper told me could make up fifteen beds!-- and to you too, that had been used to live in Barton cottage!-- It seems quite ridiculous.
From the view they have exhibited of this part of the subject, this conclusion is to be drawn, that America, if not connected at all, or only by the feeble tie of a simple league, offensive and defensive, would, by the operation of such jarring alliances, be gradually entangled in all the pernicious labyrinths of European politics and wars; and by the destructive contentions of the parts into which she was divided, would be likely to become a prey to the artifices and machinations of powers equally the enemies of them all.
It will not be denied that the representation of the Union will be most likely to possess these requisite endowments.
The fact is I am too socially disposed to be able to live contentedly without a friend; and as the only friends I have, or am likely to have, are at home, if it--or rather, if they were gone--I will not say I could not live--but I would rather not live in such a desolate world.'
There is first a state of activity, consisting, with qualifications to be mentioned presently, of movements likely to have a certain result; these movements, unless interrupted, continue until the result is achieved, after which there is usually a period of comparative quiescence.
And then she would likely say your bill was past all reason.
Yes, I said, now I understand: the question which you would have me consider is, not only how a State, but how a luxurious State is created; and possibly there is no harm in this, for in such a State we shall be more likely to see how justice and injustice originate.
Lydgate, I hope we shall not vary in sentiment as to a measure in which you are not likely to be actively concerned, but in which your sympathetic concurrence may be an aid to me.
"Because, my child," replied the Buck, "my temper is so uncertain that if I permit one of those noisy creatures to come into my presence I am likely to forget myself and do him an injury."
I did hope that no sister of MINE would run into any such foolish extravagance--do you own it, Jule?" who entered the room at that instant--"is this bit of a rag yours, or is it not more likely to be Henny's?"

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