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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



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

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February 7, 2016

a slight offense

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