AskDefine | Define subsume

Dictionary Definition



1 contain or include; "This new system subsumes the old one"
2 consider (an instance of something) as part of a general rule or principle [syn: colligate]

User Contributed Dictionary




  1. To take up into or under, as individual under species, species under genus, or particular under universal; to place (any one cognition) under another as belonging to it; to include or contain under something else.
    • 1961: J. A. Philip. Mimesis in the Sophistês of Plato. In: Proceedings and Transactions of the American Philological Association 92. p. 453--468.
      no allusion is made to forms because Plato is subsuming under the class of productive crafts both divine and human imitation;
  2. To consider an occourance as part of a principle or rule; to colligate

Related terms


to place under another as belonging to it
  • Portuguese: classificar, incluir, subordinar
  • French: subsumer
  • German: einordnen
  • Dutch: onderbrengen, plaatsen in
  • Italian: classificare
  • Russian: включать в какую-л. категорию
  • Greek: υπάγω, εντάσσω

Extensive Definition

Subsumption may refer to:
  • Subsumption, a minor premise in symbolic logic
  • The Liskov substitution principle in object-oriented programming
  • Subsumption architecture in robotics
  • a subsumption relation in category theory, semantic networks and linguistics, also known as a hyponym-hypernym relationship (Is-a); a given set A is said to subsume set B if B is a subset of A; in other words, all individuals from B are also in A, not excluding the possibility that other individuals are also in A. In other words, B is a subset of A. This can also be written as "A ⊇ B", pronounced "A subsumes B". The inverse relationship also holds true: "B ⊆ A", or "B is subsumed by A". For example, A can be all animals and B can be all cats.
subsume in German: Subsumtion

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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