re·​al·​i·​ty rē-ˈa-lə-tē How to pronounce reality (audio)
plural realities
: the quality or state of being real
: a real event, entity, or state of affairs
his dream became a reality
: the totality of real things and events
trying to escape from reality
: something that is neither derivative nor dependent but exists necessarily
: television programming that features people (especially people who are not professional actors) dealing with real-life situations or participating in contrived activities (such as competitions)
I for one am rooting for anything that stems the rising tide of reality on television.Ted Cox
… it's a tough choice between The Voice and Dancing With the Stars. … If reality means nothing to you, then you're faced with a medical drama, a superhero drama and comedies.Chris Harnick
usually used before another noun
reality stars
a reality series
reality shows
fans of reality TV/television
… critical judge Simon Cowell praised him as "the best magician ever" on the Britain's Got Talent reality competition.Markos Papadatos
The Arkansas native competing on the popular reality dating show The Bachelor has advanced to become one of only three remaining
… beat out 20,000 applicants to become one of 18 final contestants on Hell's Kitchen, the reality cooking show that banks on aspiring chefs' ambition (and vulnerabilities) and chef Gordon Ramsay's volatility.Sarah Reiss
in reality
: in actual fact

Examples of reality in a Sentence

the difference between fiction and reality The reality is that we can't afford to buy a house. He used television as an escape from reality. They made the plan a reality.
Recent Examples on the Web On July 14, the reality star, 33, who is expecting her second baby, shared a carousel of photos from her baby shower on Instagram. Gabrielle Rockson, Peoplemag, 16 July 2024 This month, Abrams learned a childhood dream would become reality: The Washington Nationals’ 23-year-old shortstop will be on the roster for the National League at the All-Star Game on Tuesday night in Arlington, Tex. Andrew Golden, Washington Post, 16 July 2024 The biological realities of sweat collide with our unreasonable (but perpetually sought out) desire to perfectly curate our external appearance. Sarah Everts, TIME, 16 July 2024 This time around, fans can check out Entertainment Weekly's nominee predictions for the main acting, guest acting, reality television, and Outstanding Drama, Comedy, and Limited Series categories., 16 July 2024 See all Example Sentences for reality 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'reality.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1513, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of reality was circa 1513

Dictionary Entries Near reality

Cite this Entry

“Reality.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


re·​al·​i·​ty rē-ˈal-ət-ē How to pronounce reality (audio)
plural realities
: the quality or state of being real
: someone or something real or actual
our dream became a reality
: television programming that shows videos of actual occurrences (as police chases, stunts, or natural disasters)

More from Merriam-Webster on reality

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