re·al·i·ty | \ rē-ˈa-lə-tē \
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 attributively reality TV

in reality

: in actual fact

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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

During her 37 years with the MMAC, Powers helped with the organization's efforts to make Miller Park a reality, create school choice programs, bring businesses to Milwaukee, build the new Bucks arena and increase diversity in the workplace. Stephanie Morse, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Obituary: Mary Ellen Powers was a behind-the-scenes force in Milwaukee's business community," 13 July 2018 The story of Franklin shows the contradiction that the Cold War posed for the United States: a desire to assert American values abroad, along with the need to compromise those values in a complicated political reality. Amanda Laugesen, Smithsonian, "This Cold War-Era Publishing House Wanted To Share American Values With the World," 13 July 2018 The decision to expand was due in part to customer demand for on-site dining, and the availability of space immediately next door helped make the plans a reality, according to Meggie Lindberg, marketing and public relations manager for the company. Mike Nolan, Daily Southtown, "Lou Malnati's in Tinley Park expanding," 13 July 2018 First-time nominee John Legend is now just an Emmy Award away from EGOT status, scoring a nomination Thursday that could make the elusive acronym a reality. Christie D'zurilla,, "John Legend is one letter away from EGOT status with new Emmy nomination," 12 July 2018 Now, after nine years of quiet work in a secret Silicon Valley location, developers may be closer than ever to making it a reality. CBS News, ""From impossible to inevitable": Developers give first look at new flying car," 12 July 2018 Ol’ Big Ears’ last time out in Kiev, the ambition in this current Liverpool side is through the roof and the owners are spending big in order to make their dreams a reality., "Why New Liverpool Signing Naby Keita Has the Potential to Become One of the World's Best Midfielders," 12 July 2018 The bulk of her fortune comes from her reality show salary, but also from her endorsement deals. Megan Friedman, Harper's BAZAAR, "Here’s How Much Every Member of the Kardashian-Jenner Family Is Worth," 11 July 2018 Though cities have promoted the Olympics as a chance for reinvention, the reality is often an Icarus-like tale of optimistic infrastructure investments gone wrong. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "Will LA’s ‘no-build’ Olympics spur Southern California’s next building boom?," 10 July 2018

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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Phrases Related to reality

divorced from reality

Statistics for reality

Last Updated

10 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for reality

The first known use of reality was in 1550

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More Definitions for reality



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 \
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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