Last modified on 8 December 2014, at 02:01

reality

EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

[circa 1540] From French réalité (quality of being real), Middle French realité (property, possession), from Medieval Latin realitas, from Late Latin realis (real). Recorded since 1550 as a legal term in the sense of “fixed property” (compare real estate, realty); the sense “real existence” is attested from 1647.

PronunciationEdit

NounEdit

reality (usually uncountable, plural realities)

  1. The state of being actual or real.
    The reality of the crash scene on TV dawned upon him only when he saw the victim was no actor but his friend.
    • Joseph Addison (1672-1719)
      A man fancies that he understands a critic, when in reality he does not comprehend his meaning.
    • 1915, George A. Birmingham, Gossamer, Ch.I:
      As a political system democracy seems to me extraordinarily foolish, []. My servant is, so far as I am concerned, welcome to as many votes as he can get. [] I do not suppose that it matters much in reality whether laws are made by dukes or cornerboys, but I like, as far as possible, to associate with gentlemen in private life.
    • 2013 June 7, Joseph Stiglitz, “Globalisation is about taxes too”, The Guardian Weekly, volume 188, number 26, page 19: 
      It is time the international community faced the reality: we have an unmanageable, unfair, distortionary global tax regime. It is a tax system that is pivotal in creating the increasing inequality that marks most advanced countries today [].
  2. A real entity, event or other fact.
    The ultimate reality of life is that it ends in death.
    • John Milton (1608-1674)
      And to realities yield all her shows.
    • James Beattie (1735-1803)
      My neck may be an idea to you, but it is reality to me.
  3. The entirety of all that is real.
  4. An individual observer's own subjective perception of that which is real.
  5. (obsolete) Loyalty; devotion.
    • Thomas Fuller (1606-1661)
      To express our reality to the emperor.
  6. (law, obsolete) Realty; real estate.

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TranslationsEdit

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See alsoEdit

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SpanishEdit

NounEdit

reality m (plural realities)

  1. (television) reality show