re·​al·​i·​ty | \ rē-ˈa-lə-tē How to pronounce reality (audio) \
plural realities

Definition of reality

1 : the quality or state of being real
2a(1) : a real event, entity, or state of affairs his dream became a reality
(2) : the totality of real things and events trying to escape from reality
b : something that is neither derivative nor dependent but exists necessarily
3 : television programming that features videos of actual occurrences (such as a police chase, stunt, or natural disaster) often used attributivelyreality TV
in reality
: in actual fact

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Synonyms & Antonyms for reality



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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web The reality is the Giants aren't going anywhere this season. Tom Canavan, Star Tribune, "NY Giants squander chance to get back into NFC East race," 23 Oct. 2020 But if there is representation in the editing room, maybe our other strengths can shine through and we are given a fair shot and reap the rewards of being on reality television, like many of our white female counterparts. Dalton Ross,, "Survivor Quarantine Questionnaire: Crystal Cox on why Survivor needs more minority editors," 22 Oct. 2020 The reality is that investors have their eyes fixed firmly on the future, and unless a company was crippled by coronavirus, 2020 can be pretty much ignored as a one-off hit. James Mackintosh, WSJ, "Pandemic Boom Stocks Don’t Have Earnings to Support Them," 22 Oct. 2020 But my research on state secularism and religion shows that the reality is much more complicated. Ahmet T. Kuru, The Conversation, "Beheading in France could bolster president’s claim that Islam is in ‘crisis’ – but so is French secularism," 20 Oct. 2020 The reality might not be too far from that, but the clubs actually have more in common than the perception would suggest. Nick Piecoro, The Arizona Republic, "Dodgers, Rays clash in World Series to conclude a season that feels legit," 20 Oct. 2020 But the reality is that fate might be out of the candidates', or anyone else's, hands. Jon Walker, TheWeek, "How rain could decide the Senate and the fate of a Biden presidency," 20 Oct. 2020 Her fascination with reality television seems largely phenomenological, an extension of her critical writing: As a deeply private person, contemporary standards of self-exposure fascinate and repel her. Megan O’grady, New York Times, "Barbara Kruger," 19 Oct. 2020 The reality is, however, the law’s prohibitive costs placed coverage outside the reach of everyday Americans, including countless with pre-existing conditions. Seema Verma, National Review, "Obamacare’s Illusion of Pre-existing Condition Protections," 19 Oct. 2020

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

1550, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for reality

Time Traveler

The first known use of reality was in 1550

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Statistics for reality

Last Updated

27 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Reality.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Oct. 2020.

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How to pronounce reality (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of reality

: the true situation that exists : the real situation
: something that actually exists or happens : a real event, occurrence, situation, etc.


re·​al·​i·​ty | \ rē-ˈa-lə-tē How to pronounce reality (audio) \
plural realities

Kids Definition of reality

1 : the way things actually are Our trip is over. Now it's back to reality.
2 : someone or something that is real or actually exists He made his dream a reality.

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Comments on reality

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