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a. a ground for legal action; matter giving rise to a lawsuit
b. the lawsuit itself
2. (in the philosophy of Aristotle) any of four requirements for a thing's coming to be, namely material (material cause), its nature (formal cause), an agent (efficient cause), and a purpose (final cause)


any immediate, or more indirect, factor precipitating an outcome. See also CAUSALITY AND CAUSAL RELATIONSHIP.



a phenomenon that directly determines or gives rise to another phenomenon, the effect. In the real world all phenomena and processes are in a state of universal connection and interaction. The concept of “cause” presupposes the singling out of a particular group of phenomena or a system, within the framework of which a causal relation is established between particular phenomena and processes.

Every phenomenon is grounded in several others and is determined by them, its causes. In the process of cognition the researcher inevitably goes beyond the mere description of facts and turns to an investigation of the laws of their origin, development, and functioning, seeking the causes that determine the corresponding properties of a particular object. The movement of thought from description to causal explanation is the movement of cognition from outer to inner, from phenomenon to essence.

As the basis and essence of the effect, the cause functions as the originating and determining element in the relationship between phenomena. The interconnection and mutual conditioning of phenomena take an innumerable variety of forms. Accordingly, the types of causes are extremely diverse. In modern science causes are classified by the most varied criteria. Thus, depending on the nature of the causal relations, causes are classified as ideal and material, informational and energetic (energeticheskie), dynamic and statistical, simple and compound, single-factor and multiple-factor, systemic and nonsystemic, external and internal, primary and nonprimary, objective and subjective, and so on.

It is customary to distinguish the cause from the circumstances of its operation. In the social sciences, causes are distinguished from reasons—the processes contributing to the formation and manifestation of causes. Consideration of the diversity of phenomena gives rise to the conception of causality as a fundamental feature of reality.



Actions, omissions, events, conditions, or a combination thereof, which led to the accident or incident investigation (ICAO).
References in periodicals archive ?
It is sad that it is a case, but the Russian war air strikes have been a direct cause of this crisis around Aleppo.
This last finding suggests that RSV can be the direct cause of the heart damage and that arrhythmias can be found also in children with very mild RSV bronchiolitis in whom pulmonary hypertension and lung damage are nonexistent or marginal," wrote the investigators, who reported that they had no conflicts of interest.
At an inquest into his death yesterday, Worcester Coroner Geraint Williams recorded a verdict of natural causes, citing pneumonia and adult respiratory distress syndrome as the direct cause of death.
Alain Bouillard, leading the investigation into the crash on June 1, said the plane's speed sensors, called Pitot tubes, were not the direct cause of the crash but a factor in it.
New research published earlier this year shows malnutrition is the direct cause of one in every three child deaths in the world.
And the excuse that "a few bad apples" perpetrated these crimes was dismissed by the committee, which reported, "Donald Rumsfeld's authorization of aggressive interrogation techniques for use at Guantanamo Bay was a direct cause of detainee abuse there.
The most promising studies suggest a relationship between low vitamin D intake and many diseases, but they have failed to show direct cause and effect.
It was the direct cause of the two coups in 1966, the Nigerian-Biafra Civil War of 1967-1970, and the subsequent coups and counter-coups that have been the misery of Nigeria.
However, the hospital where Nisbet died did not report the death to Medtronic or the FDA because it did not consider the company's product to be the direct cause of death, the paper said, quoting the hospital's spokesman.
After an 18-month investigation, the report described the Rumsfeld order as "a direct cause for detainee abuse" at Guantanamo Bay, and concluded that it "influenced and contributed to the use of abusive techniques, including military working dogs, forced nudity, and stress positions," that began in Guantanamo, and spread to Afghanistan and Iraq.
There was contact with another player but we can't point to a direct cause.
explained the realities about secondhand smoke: "[W]e as medical examiners do not list ETS [environmental tobacco smoke] on death certificates since the present state of our knowledge and controversial aspects of ETS adverse health effects neither allow us to document ETS as a direct cause of death nor to establish to a reasonable degree of medical certainty the role of ETS as a contributory cause of death.