Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

neutral

play
noun neu·tral \ˈnü-trəl, ˈnyü-\

Simple Definition of neutral

  • : a color that is not bright or strong : a neutral color

  • : the position of the gears in a car, truck, etc., when they do not touch each other and power from the engine does not move the wheels

  • : a person, country, etc., that does not support either side of an argument, fight, war, etc.

Full Definition of neutral

  1. 1 :  one that is neutral

  2. 2 :  a neutral color

  3. 3 :  a position of disengagement (as of gears)

Examples of neutral

  1. He put the car in neutral.

  2. Their sister remained a neutral in the dispute.

  3. The two countries were neutrals while their neighbors were at war.



15th Century

First Known Use of neutral

15th century

Other Automotive Terms


2

neutral

adjective neu·tral

Simple Definition of neutral

  • : not supporting either side of an argument, fight, war, etc.

  • : not supporting one political view over another

  • : not connected with either side involved in a war, contest, etc.

Full Definition of neutral

  1. 1 :  not engaged on either side; specifically :  not aligned with a political or ideological grouping <a neutral nation>

  2. 2 :  of or relating to a neutral state or power <neutral territory>

  3. 3 a :  not decided or pronounced as to characteristics :  indifferent b (1) :  achromatic (2) :  nearly achromatic c (1) :  neuter 3 (2) :  lacking stamens or pistils d :  neither acid nor basic e :  not electrically charged

  4. 4 :  produced with the tongue in the position it has when at rest <the neutral vowels of \ə-ˈbəv\ above>

neu·tral·ly play \-trə-lē\ adverb
neu·tral·ness noun

Examples of neutral

  1. He remained neutral while his brothers argued.

  2. She tries to be a fair and neutral journalist.

  3. The battle took place in neutral waters.

  4. The duel will be held on neutral ground.

  5. The report was written in neutral language.

  6. Why did you do that? he asked in a neutral tone of voice.



Origin of neutral

Middle English neuterall mutually neutralizing, from Medieval Latin *neutralis, back-formation from neutralitas middle ground, from Latin neutralis neuter, from neutr-, neuter


First Known Use: 1549




Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up neutral? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 8, 2016

to clear from accusation or blame

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image1037863653

Which of the following refers to thin, bending ice, or to the act of running over such ice?

duvet kittly-benders spindrift pince-nez
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ