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Meaning of material

ma•te•ri•al

Pronunciation: (mu-tēr'ē-ul), [key]
— n.
  1. the substance or substances of which a thing is made or composed: Stone is a durable material.
  2. anything that serves as crude or raw matter to be used or developed: Wood pulp is the raw material from which paper is made.
  3. any constituent element.
  4. a textile fabric: material for a dress.
  5. a group of ideas, facts, data, etc., that may provide the basis for or be incorporated into some integrated work: to gather material for a history of North Carolina; to write material for a comedy show.
  6. the articles or apparatus needed to make or do something: writing materials.
  7. a person considered as having qualities suited to a particular sphere of activity: The boy's teachers did not think he was college material.
—adj.
  1. formed or consisting of matter; physical; corporeal: the material world.
  2. relating to, concerned with, or involving matter: material forces.
  3. pertaining to the physical rather than the spiritual or intellectual aspect of things: material comforts.
  4. pertaining to or characterized by an undue interest in corporeal things; unspiritual.
  5. of substantial import; of much consequence; important: Your support will make a material difference in the success of our program.
  6. pertinent or essential (usually fol. by to): a question not material to the subject at hand.
  7. likely to influence the determination of a case: material evidence.
  8. of or pertaining to matter as distinguished from form.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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