subject matter


the substance of a discussion, book, writing, etc., as distinguished from its form or style.
the matter that is subject to some action.
the matter out of which a thing is formed.

Origin of subject matter

First recorded in 1590–1600 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for subject matter

topic, text, subject, category, contents

Examples from the Web for subject matter

Contemporary Examples of subject matter

Historical Examples of subject matter

  • We may now consider this question of the subject-matter and its expression in words.

    The Lyric

    John Drinkwater

  • To him the subject-matter 23 of the science is self-contained.

  • Moreover, subject-matter never can be got into the child from without.

  • So much for the use of the subject-matter in interpretation.

  • We were saying, when we spoke of the subject-matter, that we had no need of lamentation and strains of sorrow?

British Dictionary definitions for subject matter

subject matter


the substance or main theme of a book, discussion, debate, etc
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