Definition of nomological in English:



  • 1Relating to or denoting principles that resemble laws, especially those laws of nature which are neither logically necessary nor theoretically explicable, but just are so.

    • ‘I take it that Quine has in mind a causal or nomological sense.’
    • ‘Many standard theories of causation also endorse this conclusion, for example, if we are willing to assume it is a law that all ravens are black, then nomological theories of causation will support the claim.’
    • ‘The laws linking mind and brain are what Feigl calls nomological danglers, that is, brute facts added onto the body of integrated physical law.’
    1. 1.1
      another term for nomothetic
      • ‘For Boyle, physical objects do exhibit nomological regularities, but this is a contingent fact about the world, or rather, for Boyle was cautious about generalizing, about the spatio-temporal portion of it we occupy.’
      • ‘This way, one might have interaction yet preserve a kind of nomological closure, in the sense that no laws are infringed.’
      • ‘A nomological network seeks to relate theoretical constructs to each other, theoretical constructs to observable measures, and observable measures to each other.’
      • ‘Four of those theories are nomological, and only one is historical.’
      • ‘What we want is a characterization of every physical process so that the invariance of cause and effect corresponds to nomological irreversibility.’


Mid 19th century from Greek nomos ‘law’ + -logical (see -logy).