When something underlies something else, it is the foundation or support of that something. The underlies of a tree are the roots that hold it up, the trunk that supports it, and the branches that grow from it.

  • The underlies of the building are the ground and the foundation.

  • The underlies of the argument are the issues that were raised.

Definition of underlies


To lie in a position directly beneath.


To lie under or beneath.


To serve as a basis of; form the foundation of.


To be subject to; be liable to answer, as a charge or challenge.


To underlay.

Nearby Words

underlies Pronunciation in a video

Example Sentences for underlies

  • 1

    Is the underlying parameter the same as the underlying variable

  • 2

    The underlying principle is the same.

  • 3

    Dating is the interpretation of the underlying data.

  • 4

    Fix the underlying cause of the issue.

  • 5

    The prognosis varies with the underlying cause.

  • 6

    The underlying cause of the condition is unknown.

  • 7

    The underlying concept of the album is the moon.

  • 8

    They also underlie the phenomena of tickling.

  • 9

    But the underlying issue is the corrosive effect of misrepresentation.

  • 10

    But what is the explanation underlying the buoyancy force