noun, plural ma·te·ri·al·i·ties for 2.

material nature or quality.
something material.

Origin of materiality

From the Medieval Latin word māteriālitās, dating back to 1520–30. See material, -ity Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for materiality

Contemporary Examples of materiality

  • There is, at the end, no comeuppance, just a sense of the stealth poison of materiality—its psychic numbing.

    The Daily Beast logo
    Literary Gold in Hard Times

    Chloë Schama

    November 4, 2011

  • Materiality is a Taurus watchword and Johns incorporated various media into his work.

    The Daily Beast logo
    Your Horoscopes: May 15-21

    Starsky + Cox

    May 14, 2011

  • All the smells and the gooeyness of it all, and just the materiality of it is exciting.

    The Daily Beast logo
    My Conversation with John Updike

    Barbara Probst Solomon

    January 29, 2009

Historical Examples of materiality

  • To get to the principle of all life, as also of all materiality, we must go further still.

    Creative Evolution

    Henri Bergson

  • Materiality may very well stand the brunt of that unshotted broadside.

  • It is the consciousness of good only, without a trace of materiality or evil.

    Carmen Ariza

    Charles Francis Stocking

  • Sculpture dispenses with color, painting with the materiality of form.

  • In other words, materiality and reality are not inseparably associated.


    Henry Seward Hubbard

British Dictionary definitions for materiality



the state or quality of being physical or material
substance; matter
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 materiality

1520s, "that which is the matter of something," from Modern Latin materialitas, from materialis (see material (adj.)). From 1560s as "quality of being material;" 1640s as "quality of being important to matters at hand."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper