\ ˈtrü How to pronounce true (audio) \
truer; truest

Definition of true

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a(1) : being in accordance with the actual state of affairs true description
(2) : conformable to an essential reality
(3) : fully realized or fulfilled dreams come true
c : being that which is the case rather than what is manifest or assumed the true dimension of the problem
d : consistent true to character
2a : properly so called true love the true faith the true stomach of ruminant mammals
b(1) : possessing the basic characters of and belonging to the same natural group as a whale is a true but not a typical mammal
(2) : typical the true cats
b : honest, just
c archaic : truthful
4 : legitimate, rightful our true and lawful king
5a : that is fitted or formed or that functions accurately
b : conformable to a standard or pattern : accurate
6 : determined with reference to the earth's axis rather than the magnetic poles true north
7 : logically necessary
8 : narrow, strict in the truest sense
9 : corrected for error



Definition of true (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : in accordance with fact or reality
2a : without deviation the bullet flew straight and true
b : without variation from type breed true



Definition of true (Entry 3 of 4)

1 : truth, reality usually used with the
2 : the quality or state of being accurate (as in alignment or adjustment) used in the phrases in true and out of true


trued; trueing also truing

Definition of true (Entry 4 of 4)

transitive verb

: to make level, square, balanced, or concentric : bring or restore to a desired mechanical accuracy or form true up a board true up an engine cylinder

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Other Words from true


trueness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for true

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of true in a Sentence

Adjective Indicate whether each of the following statements is true or false. If their predictions are true, we'll be in for a long winter. Is it true that you were planning to go without me? Jobs are scarce, and that is especially true for managers. The true cost proved to be much higher than they said it would be. His true character was revealed. the true meaning of the term Adverb The bullet traveled straight and true.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective And nothing excites them so much as Conservatives who believe that Conservatives are the real progressives and progressives the true reactionaries. The Economist, "Bagehot Liz Truss and the power of perkiness," 10 Apr. 2021 All the slickest of tricks and cool gimmicks are no substitute for true customer interaction and engagement. Michael Polk, Rolling Stone, "How to Ensure That Your Branding and Images Click," 9 Apr. 2021 Senior editor Joey Capparella shows his true normcore colors in this challenge. Tony Quiroga, Car and Driver, "$50,000 Used Cars We'd Keep for Five Years: Window Shop with Car and Driver," 9 Apr. 2021 At the same time, the 2020 results showed that true swing voters make up a much bigger share of the Latino population than many Democrats believed. Los Angeles Times, "Essential Politics: Who are the Latinos who voted for Trump? New analyses provide deeper insight," 9 Apr. 2021 But what happens to the special treatment that true HNWIs want and expect? Karl Moore, Forbes, "Who Are The Non-HNWI Luxury Consumers?," 9 Apr. 2021 That becomes especially true when vulnerable people are present, like an undocumented worker or a young foreign intern, who may not be able to easily access resources if something goes wrong. Esther Mobley, San Francisco Chronicle, "A Sonoma County winery owner has been accused of sexually assaulting four women. Here's why it matters," 9 Apr. 2021 Hunter Biden’s life story is only newsworthy because of Joe Biden, and that’s also arguably true the other way around. Jo Livingstone, The New Republic, "There’s More to Hunter Biden Than a Laptop," 9 Apr. 2021 This could be particularly true in Black neighborhoods, where residents tend to vote in person. Washington Post, "New limits on food and water at Georgia’s polls could hinder Black and low-income voters, advocates say," 9 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb These arguments will not convince a true-believing textualist who is uninterested in a law's intent. Noah Feldman Bloomberg Opinion, Star Tribune, "Banning trans girls from sports is unconstitutional," 6 Apr. 2021 Lindt Home of Chocolate in Kilchberg, Switzerland is making dreams come true worldwide with its new grandiose chocolate museum and breathtaking fountain. Sonia Ramirez, Houston Chronicle, "Lindt master chocolatier opens world's largest chocolate museum and fountain," 14 Sep. 2020 The words of former First Lady Michelle Obama rang true to many across America and around the world. Ivana Kottasová, CNN, "What you need to know about coronavirus on Friday, August 7," 7 Aug. 2020 But this song’s agenda rings true now more than ever: Check in on your loved ones. Dallas News, "Art and the City: Dallas musicians face the coronavirus situation by asking, ‘Are we OK?’," 9 Apr. 2020 The Patriots have earned that distrust, but this time their alibi rings true more than the allegation. Globe Staff,, "When it comes to videotaping of Bengals, Patriots deserve the benefit of the doubt," 10 Dec. 2019 This has been obviously a dream come true many times over. Clarence E. Hill Jr., star-telegram, "The best sports dynamic duo ever? Try Brady and Belichick," 2 Feb. 2018 This has been obviously a dream come true many times over. Scott Gleeson, USA TODAY, "Tom Brady 'earned right' to retire when he wants, says Patriots president," 31 Jan. 2018 This has been obviously a dream come true many times over. Clarence E. Hill Jr., star-telegram, "The best sports dynamic duo ever? Try Brady and Belichick," 2 Feb. 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Dozens of true-to-size robo-dinos will roam the course, tilting their heads, opening their mouths and even appearing to breathe. Phillip Valys,, "Dinosaur tailgate party? 70 animatronic dinosaurs stampeding into BB&T Center parking lot," 27 Nov. 2020 Isn’t the same true of Padres star Fernando Tatis, Jr.? Tom Krasovic, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Bills, exuberant upstarts, are the 2020 Padres of the NFL," 5 Oct. 2020 Because now more than ever is the time to relax, have fun, and change up your tried and trues. Jenna Rennert, Vogue, "Your Beauty Summer Hit List Is Here," 12 June 2017 Alas, Crosby’s rock ‘n’ roll dream-come-true was soon marred by drug addiction, which in turn led to him contracting AIDS. George Varga,, "Robbin Crosby of San Diego-bred band Ratt died 15 years ago at 42," 7 June 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb That’s true more broadly, as well, in part because of how the issue has been litigated. Alia Wong, The Atlantic, "The Thorny Relationship Between Asians and Affirmative Action," 3 Aug. 2017 True the Vote itself has struggled to keep up momentum from the Obama era. Mark Berman And David Weigel,, "Trump's voter fraud panel gets pushback after asking states for election data," 30 June 2017 True the Vote itself has struggled to keep up momentum from the Obama era. Mark Berman, Washington Post, "Trump’s voting commission asked states to hand over election data. Some are pushing back.," 30 June 2017

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3a


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a


1531, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1838, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for true


Middle English trewe, from Old English trēowe faithful; akin to Old High German gitriuwi faithful, Old Irish derb sure, and probably to Sanskrit dāruṇa hard, dāru wood — more at tree entry 1

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Time Traveler for true

Time Traveler

The first known use of true was before the 12th century

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Statistics for true

Last Updated

11 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“True.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for true



English Language Learners Definition of true

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: in a straight line



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

: the quality or state of being straight, flat, even, etc.


\ ˈtrü How to pronounce true (audio) \
truer; truest

Kids Definition of true

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : agreeing with the facts : accurate a true story
2 : completely loyal : faithful You are a true friend.
3 : consistent or in accordance with The movie is true to the book.
4 : properly so called : genuine Mosses have no true seeds.
5 : placed or formed accurately : exact true pitch
6 : being or holding by right : legitimate the true owner
7 : fully realized or fulfilled It's a dream come true.



Kids Definition of true (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : in agreement with fact : truthfully She speaks true.
2 : in an accurate manner : accurately The arrow flew straight and true.



Kids Definition of true (Entry 3 of 4)

: the quality or state of being accurate (as in alignment) The door is out of true.


trued; trueing also truing

Kids Definition of true (Entry 4 of 4)

: to bring to exactly correct condition as to place, position, or shape

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