neutral

noun
neu·tral | \ˈnü-trəl, ˈnyü-\

Definition of neutral 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : one that is neutral The two countries were neutrals while their neighbors were at war.

2 : a neutral color She painted the room in neutrals.

3 : a position of disengagement (as of gears) He put the car in neutral.

neutral

adjective

Definition of neutral (Entry 2 of 2)

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

2 : of or relating to a neutral state or power neutral territory

3a : not decided or pronounced as to characteristics : indifferent

b(1) : achromatic

(2) : nearly achromatic

c(1) : neuter sense 3

(2) : lacking stamens or pistils

d : neither acid nor basic

e : not electrically charged

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

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Other Words from neutral

Adjective

neutrally \ˈnü-trə-lē, ˈnyü- \ adverb
neutralness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for neutral

Synonyms: Adjective

nonpartisan

Antonyms: Adjective

allied, confederate

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Examples of neutral in a Sentence

Noun

He put the car in neutral. Their sister remained a neutral in the dispute. The two countries were neutrals while their neighbors were at war.

Adjective

He remained neutral while his brothers argued. She tries to be a fair and neutral journalist. The battle took place in neutral waters. The duel will be held on neutral ground. The report was written in neutral language. “Why did you do that?” he asked in a neutral tone of voice.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Breaking her long running love affair with play-it-safe neutrals, the newest member of the Windsor family recently took a turn at some color in a bright yellow Brandon Maxwell dress. refinery29.com, "Meghan Markle Wore A Yellow Dress, So We Wore A Yellow Dress," 5 July 2018 Meanwhile free-scoring the Argentines might well have been the neutrals team. SI.com, "World Cup Countdown: 18 Weeks to Go - Who Would've Won the 1942 Tournament?," 16 Feb. 2018 This classic color combo pairs perfectly with stark white and craft-toned nudes, so don't be afraid to infuse light neutrals. Putnam & Putnam, Harper's BAZAAR, "Introducing: The Wedding Colors For Spring," 17 Jan. 2017 Stick to black and neutrals, for easier mixing and matching — and better hiding of stains. Jada Yuan, New York Times, "How Do You Pack for a Yearlong Trip?," 27 June 2018 Not quite neutrals, like a Naked Palette, but definitely toned down from the galaxy palette. Sarah Spellings, The Cut, "Rihanna Dropped a New Fenty Beauty Palette, and It’s Spicy," 25 June 2018 Sadly, this year’s Nigeria team isn’t likely to win over any neutrals. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, "World Cup 2018: A Guide to Every Team," 12 June 2018 Any neutrals looking for a team to get behind at the World Cup shouldn't look any further than Iceland, a feel-good story of international soccer that just keeps on giving. Steve Douglas, chicagotribune.com, "World Cup Countdown: Iceland, the feel-good story looking to surprise again," 26 May 2018 But if punchy pinks and corals aren't your thing, a few staffers also make a strong case for summer darks and neutrals with a kick. Lindsay Schallon, Glamour, "12 Nail Colors You'll Want on Your Toes All Summer," 5 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The Fed's current projection for the neutral rate — the point where monetary policy is not stimulating growth or restraining it — is 2.9 percent. Martin Crutsinger, courant.com, "Federal Reserve projects further gradual hikes in key rate," 13 July 2018 Because the city is collecting more money on the same rate — instead of rolling back to a revenue-neutral tax rate that takes into account higher values — keeping the rate the same is considered a tax hike. Ben Brasch, ajc, "Kennesaw has proposed a tax increase. Here’s how to voice your opinion," 5 July 2018 In fact, another variant of the gene (APOE3) is neutral in terms of disease risk, and yet another variant (APOE2) actually lowers an individual’s risk. Mark Rudin, idahostatesman, "At Boise State, Idaho’s only Alzheimer’s researchers labor to grasp a growing disease," 14 June 2018 Fed policy makers, in contrast, peg the neutral rate at 2.9 percent, according to the median projection of officials in March. Rich Miller And Jennifer Jacobs, BostonGlobe.com, "Harvard alumnus is Trump’s nominee for Federal Reserve vice chairman," 16 Apr. 2018 Although some jewelers such as Goldberg may be fairly neutral, extreme views about synthetic diamonds are common. Annabelle Williams, Philly.com, "What do lab-grown diamonds mean for Jewelers Row?," 7 July 2018 As their builders are learning, the data used to train deep-learning systems isn’t neutral. Jonathan Vanian, Fortune, "Unmasking A.I.'s Bias Problem," 25 June 2018 So the very sense of having an algorithm that orders search is not neutral. Recode Staff, Recode, "Full transcript: Silicon Valley Congressman Ro Khanna on Recode Decode," 15 June 2018 The police arrived, in seven vehicles, but the atmosphere was neutral. Thomas Fox Parry, The Atlantic, "The Death of a Gig Worker," 1 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'neutral.' 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 neutral

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for neutral

Noun

see neutral entry 2

Adjective

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

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Phrases Related to neutral

the neutral zone

Statistics for neutral

Last Updated

12 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for neutral

The first known use of neutral was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for neutral

neutral

noun

English Language Learners Definition of neutral

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: 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.

neutral

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of neutral (Entry 2 of 2)

: 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.

neutral

noun
neu·tral | \ˈnü-trəl, ˈnyü-\

Kids Definition of neutral

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a person or group that does not favor either side in a quarrel, contest, or war

2 : a grayish color or color that is not bright

3 : a position of gears (as in the transmission of a motor vehicle) in which they are not in contact

neutral

adjective

Kids Definition of neutral (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : not favoring either side in a quarrel, contest, or war

2 : of or relating to a country that doesn't favor either side in a dispute neutral territory

3 : not strong in opinion or feeling My feelings toward work are neutral.

4 : having a color that is not bright : grayish neutral walls

5 : neither acid nor basic

6 : not electrically charged

neutral

noun
neu·tral | \ˈn(y)ü-trəl \

Medical Definition of neutral 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: a neutral color

neutral

adjective

Medical Definition of neutral (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : not decided or pronounced as to characteristics

2a : totally lacking in saturation : achromatic

b : not decided in color : nearly achromatic : of low saturation

3 : neither acid nor basic : neither acid nor alkaline specifically : having a pH value of 7.0 a neutral solution contains both hydrogen ions and hydroxide ions at the same concentration 1.00×10−7 — Linus Pauling

4 : not electrically charged

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neutral

noun
neu·tral

Legal Definition of neutral 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: one that is neutral specifically : an impartial person used in alternative dispute resolution to help resolve or to determine the matters in dispute

neutral

adjective

Legal Definition of neutral (Entry 2 of 2)

: not engaged on either side specifically : not aligned with a political or ideological grouping

Other Words from neutral

neutrally adverb
neutralness noun

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Comments on neutral

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