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The following statistics are based on the British National Corpus, so they are representative for the British English.

Usage statistics for the noun material:

spoken English21.82%written English78.18% imaginative writing14.52%informational writing85.48%

Distribution of usage frequency for the most common synonyms of the noun material:


Material is sometimes a misspelling of materially.

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Definition of the noun material

What does material mean as a name of something?

Material is one of the top 1000 most common nouns. It is used mostly in informational writing, being one of the top 1000 most common nouns in informational written English.

noun - plural: materials

  1. the tangible substance that goes into the makeup of a physical object
  2. information (data or ideas or observations) that can be used or reworked into a finished form
    • example: the archives provided rich material for a definitive biography
    • lexical domain: Communicative Processes - nouns denoting communicative processes and contents
    • more generic words: info / information = a message received and understood
    • more specific words:
      • rehash = old material that is slightly reworked and used again
      • copy = material suitable for a journalistic account
  3. artifact made by weaving or felting or knitting or crocheting natural or synthetic fibers
    • example: she measured off enough material for a dress
    • lexical domain: Artifacts - nouns denoting man-made objects
    • synonyms of material: cloth / fabric / textile
    • more generic words: artefact / artifact = a man-made object taken as a whole
    • more specific terms:
      • aba = a fabric woven from goat hair and camel hair
      • acrylic = a synthetic fabric
      • alpaca = a thin glossy fabric made of the wool of the Lama pacos, or made of a rayon or cotton imitation of that wool
      • baize = a bright green fabric napped to resemble felt
      • basket weave = a cloth woven of two or more threads interlaced to suggest the weave of a basket
      • batik = a dyed fabric
      • batiste = a thin plain-weave cotton or linen fabric
      • belting = the material of which belts are made
      • bombazine = a twilled fabric used for dresses
      • boucle = a fabric of uneven yarn that has an uneven knobby effect
      • broadcloth = a closely woven silk or synthetic fabric with a narrow crosswise rib
      • broadcloth = a densely textured woolen fabric with a lustrous finish
      • brocade = thick heavy expensive material with a raised pattern
      • buckram = a coarse cotton fabric stiffened with glue
      • bunting = a loosely woven fabric used for flags, etc.
      • calico = coarse cloth with a bright print
      • cambric = a finely woven white linen
      • camel's hair / camelhair = a soft tan cloth made with the hair of a camel
      • camlet = a fabric of Asian origin
      • camouflage / camo = fabric dyed with splotches of green and brown and black and tan
      • canopy = the umbrellalike part of a parachute that fills with air
      • canvass / canvas = a heavy, closely woven fabric
      • cashmere = a soft fabric made from the wool of the Cashmere goat
      • cerecloth = a waterproof waxed cloth once used as a shroud
      • challis = a soft lightweight fabric
      • chambray = a lightweight fabric woven with white threads across a colored warp
      • chenille = a heavy fabric woven with chenille cord
      • chiffon = a sheer fabric of silk or rayon
      • chino = a coarse twilled cotton fabric frequently used for uniforms
      • chintz = a brightly printed and glazed cotton fabric
      • coating = a heavy fabric suitable for coats
      • cobweb = a fabric so delicate and transparent as to resemble a web of a spider
      • corduroy / cord = a cut pile fabric with vertical ribs
      • cotton = fabric woven from cotton fibers
      • Canton flannel / cotton flannel = a stout cotton fabric with nap on only one side
      • crape / crepe = a soft thin light fabric with a crinkled surface
      • cretonne = an unglazed heavy fabric; brightly printed
      • crinoline = a stiff coarse fabric used to stiffen hats or clothing
      • damask = a fabric of linen or cotton or silk or wool with a reversible pattern woven into it
      • dungaree / denim / jean = a coarse durable twill-weave cotton fabric
      • diamante = fabric covered with glittering ornaments such as sequins or rhinestones
      • diaper = a fabric (usually cotton or linen) with a distinctive woven pattern of small repeated figures
      • dimity = a strong cotton fabric with a raised pattern
      • doeskin = a fine smooth soft woolen fabric
      • drapery = cloth gracefully draped and arranged in loose folds
      • duck = a heavy cotton fabric of plain weave
      • duffel / duffle = a coarse heavy woolen fabric
      • elastic = a fabric made of yarns containing an elastic material
      • etamine / etamin = a soft cotton or worsted fabric with an open mesh
      • faille = a ribbed woven fabric of silk or rayon or cotton
      • felt = a fabric made of compressed matted animal fibers
      • vulcanized fiber / fiber / fibre = a leatherlike material made by compressing layers of paper or cloth
      • flannel = a soft light woolen fabric
      • flannelette = a cotton fabric imitating flannel
      • fleece = a soft bulky fabric with deep pile
      • foulard = a light plain-weave or twill-weave silk or silklike fabric
      • frieze = a heavy woolen fabric with a long nap
      • fustian = a strong cotton and linen fabric with a slight nap
      • gabardine = a firm durable fabric with a twill weave
      • georgette = a thin silk dress material
      • gingham = a clothing fabric in a plaid weave
      • grogram = a coarse fabric of silk mixed with wool or mohair and often stiffened with gum
      • grosgrain = a silk or silklike fabric with crosswise ribs
      • haircloth / hair = cloth woven from horsehair or camelhair
      • herringbone = a twilled fabric with a herringbone pattern
      • homespun = a rough loosely woven fabric originally made with yarn that was spun at home
      • hopsacking / hopsack = a loosely woven coarse fabric of cotton or linen
      • horsehair = a fabric made from fibers taken from the mane or tail of horses
      • jaconet = a lightweight cotton cloth with a smooth and slightly stiff finish
      • jacquard = a highly figured fabric woven on a Jacquard loom
      • khaddar / khadi = a coarse homespun cotton cloth made in India
      • khaki = a sturdy twilled cloth of a yellowish brown color used especially for military uniforms
      • knit = a fabric made by knitting
      • lace = a delicate decorative fabric woven in an open web of symmetrical patterns
      • lame = a fabric interwoven with threads of metal
      • imitation leather / leatherette = fabric made to look like leather
      • linen = a fabric woven with fibers from the flax plant
      • linsey-woolsey = a rough fabric of linen warp and wool or cotton woof
      • lint = cotton or linen fabric with the nap raised on one side
      • lisle = a fabric woven with lisle thread
      • mackinaw = a heavy woolen cloth heavily napped and felted, often with a plaid design
      • mackintosh / macintosh = a lightweight waterproof (usually rubberized) fabric
      • madras = a light patterned cotton cloth
      • marseille = strong cotton fabric with a raised pattern
      • metallic = a fabric made of a yarn that is partly or entirely of metal
      • mohair = fabric made with yarn made from the silky hair of the Angora goat
      • watered-silk / moire = silk fabric with a wavy surface pattern
      • moleskin = a durable cotton fabric with a velvety nap
      • monk's cloth = a heavy cloth in basket weave
      • moquette = a thick velvety synthetic fabric used for carpets and soft upholstery
      • moreen = a heavy fabric of wool (or wool and cotton) used mostly in upholstery or for curtains
      • motley = a multicolored woolen fabric woven of mixed threads in 14th to 17th century England
      • mousseline de sole = a gauze-like fabric of silk or rayon
      • muslin = plain-woven cotton fabric
      • nankeen = a durable fabric formerly loomed by hand in China from natural cotton having a yellowish color
      • meshwork / meshing / network / mesh / net = an open fabric of string or rope or wire woven together at regular intervals
      • ninon = a fine strong sheer silky fabric made of silk or rayon or nylon
      • nylon = a synthetic fabric
      • oilcloth = cloth treated on one side with a drying oil or synthetic resin
      • olive drab = a cloth of an olive-brown color used for military uniforms
      • organza = a fabric made of silk or a silklike fabric that resembles organdy
      • paisley = a soft wool fabric with a colorful swirled pattern of curved shapes
      • trousering / panting = any fabric used to make trousers
      • pepper-and-salt = a fabric woven with flecks of light and dark
      • percale = a fine closely woven cotton fabric
      • permanent press / durable press = a fabric that has been chemically processed to resist wrinkles and hold its shape
      • piece of material / piece of cloth = a separate part consisting of fabric
      • pilot cloth = a thick blue cloth used to make overcoats and coats for sailors etc
      • pinstripe = a fabric with very thin stripes
      • pique = tightly woven fabric with raised cords
      • plush = a fabric with a nap that is longer and softer than velvet
      • polyester = any of a large class of synthetic fabrics
      • pongee = a soft thin cloth woven from raw silk
      • poplin = a ribbed fabric used in clothing and upholstery
      • print = a fabric with a dyed pattern pressed onto it
      • quilting = a material used for making a quilt, or a quilted fabric
      • rayon = a synthetic silklike fabric
      • repp / rep = a fabric with prominent rounded crosswise ribs
      • sackcloth = a coarse cloth resembling sacking
      • bagging / sacking = coarse fabric used for bags or sacks
      • sailcloth = a strong fabric (such as cotton canvas) used for making sails and tents
      • samite = a heavy silk fabric
      • sateen = a cotton fabric with a satiny finish
      • satin = a smooth fabric of silk or rayon
      • satinette / satinet = a fabric with a finish resembling satin but made partly or wholly from cotton or synthetic fiber
      • screening = fabric of metal or plastic mesh
      • scrim = a firm open-weave fabric used for a curtain in the theater
      • seersucker = a light puckered fabric
      • serge = a twilled woolen fabric
      • shag = a fabric with long coarse nap
      • shantung = a heavy silk fabric with a rough surface
      • sharkskin = a smooth crisp fabric
      • sheeting = fabric from which bed sheets are made
      • shirting = any of various fabrics used to make men's shirts
      • shirttail = fabric forming the tail of a shirt
      • silesia = a sturdy twill-weave cotton fabric
      • silk = a fabric made from the fine threads produced by certain insect larvae
      • spandex = an elastic synthetic fabric
      • sponge cloth = any soft porous fabric
      • stammel = a coarse woolen cloth formerly used for undergarments and usually dyed bright red
      • suede cloth / suede = a fabric made to resemble suede leather
      • suiting = a fabric used for suits
      • swan's down = soft woolen fabric used especially for baby clothes
      • taffeta = a crisp smooth lustrous fabric
      • tammy = plain-woven (often glazed) fabric of wool or wool and cotton used especially formerly for linings and garments and curtains
      • tappa / tapa = a paperlike cloth made in the South Pacific by pounding tapa bark
      • tapestry / tapis = a heavy textile with a woven design
      • tartan / plaid = a cloth having a crisscross design
      • terry cloth / terrycloth / terry = a pile fabric (usually cotton) with uncut loops on both sides
      • ticking = a strong fabric used for mattress and pillow covers
      • towelling / toweling = any of various fabrics (linen or cotton) used to make towels
      • tweed = thick woolen fabric used for clothing
      • twill = a cloth with parallel diagonal lines or ribs
      • upholstery material = the fabric used in upholstering
      • velours / velour = heavy fabric that resembles velvet
      • velvet = a silky densely piled fabric with a plain back
      • velveteen = a usually cotton fabric with a short pile imitating velvet
      • vicuna = a soft wool fabric made from the fleece of the vicuna
      • voile = a light semitransparent fabric
      • wash-and-wear = a fabric treated to be easily washable and to require no ironing
      • waterproof = any fabric impervious to water
      • web = a fabric
      • webbing = a strong fabric woven in strips
      • whipcord = a strong worsted or cotton fabric with a diagonal rib
      • wincey = a plain or twilled fabric of wool and cotton used especially for warm shirts or skirts and pajamas
      • wire cloth = fabric woven of metallic wire
      • woollen / woolen / wool = a fabric made from the hair of sheep
      • worsted = a woolen fabric with a hard textured surface and no nap
      • yoke = fabric comprising a fitted part at the top of a garment
      • pina cloth = a fine cloth made from pineapple fibers
    • parts:
      • edging = border consisting of anything placed on the edge to finish something
      • hem = the edge of a piece of cloth
    • substances:
      • warp = yarn arranged lengthways on a loom and crossed by the woof
      • filling / pick / weft / woof = the yarn woven across the warp yarn in weaving
  4. things needed for doing or making something
    • examples: writing materials | useful teaching materials
    • lexical domain: Artifacts - nouns denoting man-made objects
    • more generic word: equipment = an instrumentality needed for an undertaking or to perform a service
    • more specific words:
      • packaging = material used to make packages
      • railing = material for making rails or rails collectively
      • roofing = material used to construct a roof
  5. a person judged suitable for admission or employment
    • examples: he was university material | she was vice-presidential material
    • lexical domain: People - nouns denoting people
    • more generic words: applicant / applier = a person who requests or seeks something such as assistance or employment or admission

Definition of the adjective material

What does material mean as an attribute of a noun?

adjective - degrees: more material / most material

  1. concerned with worldly rather than spiritual interests
  2. derived from or composed of matter
  3. directly relevant to a matter especially a law case
    • examples: his support made a material difference | evidence material to the issue at hand | facts likely to influence the judgment are called material facts | a material witness
    • antonym: immaterial
    • similar: crucial
  4. concerned with or affecting physical as distinct from intellectual or psychological well-being
    • examples: material needs | the moral and material welfare of all good citizens
    • similar: physical
  5. having material or physical form or substance
  6. having substance or capable of being treated as fact; not imaginary

Alternative definition of the adjective material


  1. Having to do with matter.
  2. Worldly, as opposed to spiritual.
  3. See Significant.


Material is a musical group formed in 1979 and led by bass guitarist Bill Laswell.


  1. "Material" is the thirty-second album by the jazz fusion group Casiopea recorded and released in 1999.
    • genre: Jazz fusion
    • released on (16 years ago)
  2. "Material", also stylized as material, is Japanese singer-songwriter ACO's fifth studio album, released on May 23, 2001.
  3. "Material" is the second full-length album by German electronic music duo of Dieter Moebius and Conny Plank. Material was recorded in July 1981 at Conny's Studio outside of Cologne. It was released by Sky Records in 1981. Steven and Alan Freeman, writing in The Crack In The Cosmic Egg describe Material and the 1980 Moebius & Plank debut album Rastakraut Pasta, in part, this way: "Their early albums as a duo were revelations of innovation, bringing unlikely combinations of industrial rock, cosmic and even dub music together in a hybrid of genres. A reborn spirit of Krautrock that played recklessly with offbeat forms..." The incessant, forceful beat on "Conditionierer", the opening track of Material, could easily have been suitable for club dance music if not for all the odd electronic sounds added on top.
  4. "Material" is an EP by Leaether Strip. It features 2 previously unreleased studio tracks, 2 remixes, and 3 live tracks.
  5. "MATERIAL" is a musical album of Tatsuya Shimizu.
    • released on (4 years ago)
  6. "Material" is a musical album of Stonefunkers.
    • released in (21 years ago)
  7. "Material" is a musical album of hyDrone.
    • released in (6 years ago)
  8. "Material" is a musical album of The Unit Circle.
    • released on (13 years ago)
  9. "Material" is a musical album of Cornelius Cardew.


  1. "Material" is a 2012 drama comedy film written and directed by Craig Freimond .
  2. "Material" is a film, directed by Daniel Cockburn.


  1. Material used in the interior.
  2. Material: The triggery material, i.e. book, film, tv show, etc.

Phrases with Material

Phrases starting with the word Material:

  1. material body
  2. Material fact
  3. material logic
  4. material breach
  5. Material Support
  6. material witness

Phrases ending with the word Material:

  1. raw material
  2. plant material
  3. waste material
  4. animal material
  5. paving material
  6. bedding material
  7. fencing material
  8. Genetic Material
  9. packing material
  10. reading material
  11. roofing material
  12. sealing material
  13. sorbent material
  14. written material

View more phrases with the word Material in thesaurus!

Printed dictionaries and other books with definitions for Material

Click on a title to look inside that book (if available):

Google previewDictionary of Contact Allergens (2007)

by Jean-Pierre Lepoittevin, Christophe J. Coz

contrast, the material is not infrequently diluted too much or in an inappropriate vehicle resulting in a false-negative reaction. The guidelines are presented mainly in tables in order to be used at the work bench by technicians. They contain ...

Google previewRoutledge Encyclopedia of Language Teaching and Learning (2013)

by Michael Byram, Adelheid Hu

The lesson material is recorded on to the master track which cannot be erased by the student. The students« responses are recorded on to the student track which can be played back, but is erased when the machine is next in record mode so ...

Google previewConcise Encyclopedia of System Safety (2011)

Definition of Terms and Concepts by Clifton A. Ericson, II

A hazardous material is any substance or compound that has the capability of producing adverse effects on the health of humans. Many materials are inherently hazardous, while other classes of materials are contributing factors in hazards.

Google previewThe Froehlich/Kent Encyclopedia of Telecommunications (1992)

Volume 4 - Communications Human Factors to Cryptology by Fritz E. Froehlich, Allen Kent

A hypothetical piezoelectric material. like all materials has mass and elasticity, it can vibrate at some characteristic frequency. Actually, a real physical solid will have many characteristic frequencies, each associated with a mode (or a ...

Google previewDictionary of Anonymous and Pseudonymous English Literature: A-C (1926)

by Samuel Halkett, John Laing, James Kennedy, Dennis E. Rhodes

Dr Laing's daughter, Miss Catherine Laing, now undertook to prepare the material for publication, and it finally appeared in four volumes between the years 1882 and 1888. The Rev. James Kennedy, who had already, as a young assistant to ...

Online dictionaries and encyclopedias with entries for Material

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Photos about Material

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If you need related images for an article or a report, you can download stock photos:
Small photo of woven material textureSmall photo of Dark abstract background inspired by material design using cardboard and paperSmall photo of the weaved texture of a material closeup for abstractly background and for wallpaper of white colorSmall photo of tapestry materialSmall photo of tapestry materialSmall photo of tapestry materialSmall photo of Wood Montessori material for math Cuisenaire rods More...

Video language resources about Material

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View more videos about Raw material, Material world, Genetic Material, Building material, Composite material, Hazardous material, and Material implication.

See also the pronunciation examples of Material!

Quotes about Material

Material goods consist of useful material things, and of all rights to hold, or use, or derive benefits from material things, or to receive them at a future time. (Alfred Marshall)
more quotes about material...

Scrabble value of M3A1T1E1R1I1A1L1

The value of this 8-letter word is 10 points. It is included in the first and second editions of the Official Scrabble Players Dictionary.

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