[noo-ter, nyoo-]
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  1. Grammar.
    1. noting or pertaining to a gender that refers to things classed as neither masculine nor feminine.
    2. (of a verb) intransitive.
  2. Biology. having no organs of reproduction; without sex; asexual.
  3. Zoology. having imperfectly developed sexual organs, as the worker bees and ants.
  4. Botany. having neither stamens nor pistils; asexual.
  5. neutral; siding with no one.
  1. Grammar.
    1. the neuter gender.
    2. a noun of that gender.
    3. another element marking that gender.
    4. an intransitive verb.
  2. an animal made sterile by castration or spaying.
  3. Zoology. a neuter insect.
  4. a person or thing that is neutral.
verb (used with object)
  1. Veterinary Science. to spay or castrate (a dog, cat, etc.).

Origin of neuter

1350–1400; < Latin neuter neither (of two), equivalent to ne not + uter either (of two); replacing Middle English neutre < Middle French < Latin, as above Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for neuter

Contemporary Examples of neuter

Historical Examples of neuter

British Dictionary definitions for neuter


  1. grammar
    1. denoting or belonging to a gender of nouns which for the most part have inanimate referents or do not specify the sex of their referents
    2. (as noun)German ``Mädchen'' ( meaning ``girl'' ) is a neuter
  2. (of animals and plants) having nonfunctional, underdeveloped, or absent reproductive organs
  3. sexless or giving no indication of sexa neuter sort of name
  1. a sexually underdeveloped female insect, such as a worker bee
  2. a castrated animal, esp a domestic animal
  3. a flower in which the stamens and pistil are absent or nonfunctional
  1. (tr) to castrate or spay (an animal)

Word Origin for neuter

C14: from Latin, from ne not + uter either (of two)
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 neuter

late 14c., of grammatical gender, "neither masculine nor feminine," from Latin neuter "of the neuter gender," literally "neither one nor the other," from ne- "not, no" (see un-) + uter "either (of two)" (see whether). Probably a loan-translation of Greek oudeteros "neither, neuter." In 16c., it had the sense of "taking neither side, neutral."


1903, from neuter (adj.). Originally in reference to pet cats. Related: Neutered; neutering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

neuter in Medicine


  1. Having undeveloped or imperfectly developed sexual organs.
  2. Sexually undeveloped.
  1. A castrated animal.
  1. To castrate or spay.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.