[ im-uh-teer-ee-uh l ]
/ ˌɪm əˈtɪər i əl /


of no essential consequence; unimportant.
not pertinent; irrelevant.
not material; incorporeal; spiritual.

Nearby words

  1. immanent,
  2. immanentism,
  3. immanently,
  4. immanuel,
  5. immarcessible,
  6. immaterialism,
  7. immateriality,
  8. immaterialize,
  9. immature,
  10. immature cataract

Origin of immaterial

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English word from Medieval Latin word immāteriālis. See im-2, material

Related formsim·ma·te·ri·al·ly, adverbim·ma·te·ri·al·ness, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for immaterial

British Dictionary definitions for immaterial


/ (ˌɪməˈtɪərɪəl) /


of no real importance; inconsequential
not formed of matter; incorporeal; spiritual
Derived Formsimmateriality or immaterialness, nounimmaterially, adverb

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for immaterial



late 14c., "spiritual, incorporeal," from Medieval Latin immaterialis "not consisting of matter, spiritual," from assimilated form of in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + Late Latin materialis (see material). Secondary sense of "unimportant" is first recorded 1690s from material in its 16c. sense of "important." Related: Immaterially.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper