1 origin, occasion, source, root, genesis, agent, prime mover, well-spring:
The cause of the train crash is not yet known.
2 originator, creator, producer, agent, agency:
His indecision was the cause of many of our problems.
3 ground or grounds, justification, reason, basis, call, motive:
You have no cause to be dissatisfied.
4 case, matter, issue, concern; movement, undertaking; ideal, belief:
We appealed the miners' cause to the high court.
5 make, induce:
What causes hot air to rise?
6 effect, bring on or about, give rise to, result in, produce, create, precipitate, occasion, lead to, induce, generate, provoke, promote; engender; motivate, compel:
Overeating causes indigestion.
1 sb/sth that makes sth happen
real, root, true, underlying
the root cause of the problem
| deeper, greater
A greater cause for resentment is the discrepancy in pay.
| biggest, chief, clear, fundamental, important, main, major, primary, prime, principal, significant | common
Smoking is a common cause of premature death.
| likely, possible | known, unknown | direct, indirect | immediate, initial | long-term, short-term | reasonable
There is no reasonable cause to suspect an unnatural death.
| contributory | hidden | social
the social causes of ill health
VERB + CAUSE
discover, find, identify
attempts to identify the immediate cause of the breakdown
CAUSE + VERB
be, lie in sth
The real cause of the problem lies in the poor construction of the bridge.
cause and effect, the cause of death, due to/from/of natural causes
He died of natural causes.
good, great, real, reasonable
VERB + CAUSE
We have good cause to believe that he was involved in the crime.
The experts may find cause to disagree with the school's decision.
| give (sb)
Her health is giving us great cause for concern.
The onus is on government departments to show cause why information cannot be disclosed.
There is no cause for alarm.
cause for concern, with/without good cause, without just cause
3 aim that people believe in
deserving, good, just, noble, worthwhile, worthy
The money she left went to various worthy causes.
| bad, unjust | common
The different groups support a common cause.
| hopeless, lost
(= one that has failed or that cannot succeed)
| humanitarian, social | communist, socialist, etc.
VERB + CAUSE
be committed/sympathetic to, champion, fight for, further, help, promote, serve, support
young men willing to fight for the cause She was keen to do anything that would further the cause.
| take up
She has taken up the cause of animal rights.
He pleaded the cause of the local fishermen.
in a/the ~
prominent figures in the socialist cause
| in the ~ of
to disregard the strict letter of the law in the cause of true justice
a cause cel
(= a controversial issue that attracts a great deal of public attention),
(all) for/in a good cause
The function took a lot of organizing, but was all in a good cause.
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