ma·​te·​ri·​al·​ize | \ mə-ˈtir-ē-ə-ˌlīz How to pronounce materialize (audio) \
materialized; materializing

Definition of materialize

transitive verb

1a : to make material : objectify
b : to cause to appear in bodily form materialize the spirits of the dead
2 : to cause to be materialistic

intransitive verb

1 : to assume bodily form
2a : to appear especially suddenly
b : to come into existence

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Other Words from materialize

materializer noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for materialize



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Examples of materialize in a Sentence

A waiter suddenly materialized beside our table. Rain clouds materialized on the horizon.
Recent Examples on the Web The full picture of what is happening has yet to materialize due to the lack of available data. Andrew Boryga,, "Overdoses rise in South Florida as people struggle with isolation from pandemic," 13 Sep. 2020 This time considerable numbers of workers did join in, and independent union leaders promised a general strike that has yet to materialize. Fred Weir, The Christian Science Monitor, "With or without Lukashenko, ‘Belarus will never be the same again’," 11 Sep. 2020 But those larger contracts won't materialize unless more students follow Maker's path, said Patrick Rishe, a sports business professor at Washington University in St. Louis. Khristopher J. Brooks, CBS News, "Makur Maker spurned top college hoops programs to play at a historically Black school," 27 Aug. 2020 The Palestinians responded to the UAE agreement by calling for an urgent meeting of the Arab League and the 57-nation Organization of Islamic Cooperation, but the oil-rich UAE is a powerful member of both and the meetings have yet to materialize. Joseph Krauss, Star Tribune, "Palestinian leaders stay the course as crises mount," 26 Aug. 2020 Without more help for the U.S. economy, analysts say the recovery that investors have been assuming is on the way won’t materialize. Jessica Menton, USA TODAY, "S&P 500 flirts with record highs again on optimism for economic recovery," 18 Aug. 2020 No one wants to be left behind, even though industry revolutions have yet to materialize. Charlie Mitchell, The New Republic, "Farms Can’t Save the Planet," 7 Aug. 2020 The bevy of new trade deals promised by Boris Johnson's government have yet to materialize. Hanna Ziady, CNN, "Bank of England sees smaller hit to UK economy but slower recovery," 6 Aug. 2020 Breed’s budget office is in the early stages of drawing up contingency plans if these assumed revenue sources don’t materialize. Dominic Fracassa,, "SF Mayor Breed unveils balanced — but fragile — city budget hammered by coronavirus," 31 July 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'materialize.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of materialize

1710, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

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Time Traveler for materialize

Time Traveler

The first known use of materialize was in 1710

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Statistics for materialize

Last Updated

19 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Materialize.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Sep. 2020.

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More Definitions for materialize


How to pronounce materialize (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of materialize

: to become visible : to appear especially in a sudden or magical way
: to begin to happen or exist : to occur or become real


ma·​te·​ri·​al·​ize | \ mə-ˈtir-ē-ə-ˌlīz How to pronounce materialize (audio) \
materialized; materializing

Kids Definition of materialize

1 : to appear suddenly As soon as I arrived, my friends materialized.
2 : to become actual fact Their hopes never materialized.
3 : to cause to take on a physical form She claimed she could materialize the spirits of the dead.

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