(Lat. probabilior, “more likely”). A term used in Roman Catholic theology when the question was asked, What ought a Christian to do when duties seem to clash? What if Christian freedom suggests course A, but legalistic considerations point to course B? Two answers were given: (1) arguments in favor of A and B should be examined, and that course followed which seems more probably correct (hence Probabiliorism); (2) provided the nonlegalistic line of conduct can be defended, even as less probable than the legal, it may be followed (Probabilism*).
Acute controversy on the issue broke out in 1656 when