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Wordnet 3.0

NOUN (6)

1. a vaguely specified concern;
- Example: "several matters to attend to"
- Example: "it is none of your affair"
- Example: "things are going well"
[syn: matter, affair, thing]

2. some situation or event that is thought about;
- Example: "he kept drifting off the topic"
- Example: "he had been thinking about the subject for several years"
- Example: "it is a matter for the police"
[syn: topic, subject, issue, matter]

3. that which has mass and occupies space;
- Example: "physicists study both the nature of matter and the forces which govern it"

4. a problem;
- Example: "is anything the matter?"

5. (used with negation) having consequence;
- Example: "they were friends and it was no matter who won the games"

6. written works (especially in books or magazines);
- Example: "he always took some reading matter with him on the plane"


VERB (1)

1. have weight; have import, carry weight;
- Example: "It does not matter much"
[syn: count, matter, weigh]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Matter \Mat"ter\, n. [OE. matere, F. mati[`e]re, fr. L. materia; perh. akin to L. mater mother. Cf. Mother, Madeira, Material.] 1. That of which anything is composed; constituent substance; material; the material or substantial part of anything; the constituent elements of conception; that into which a notion may be analyzed; the essence; the pith; the embodiment. [1913 Webster] He is the matter of virtue. --B. Jonson. [1913 Webster] 2. That of which the sensible universe and all existent bodies are composed; anything which has extension, occupies space, or is perceptible by the senses; body; substance. [1913 Webster] Note: Matter is usually divided by philosophical writers into three kinds or classes: solid, liquid, and gaseous. Solid substances are those whose parts firmly cohere and resist impression, as wood or stone. Liquids have free motion among their parts, and easily yield to impression, as water and wine. Gaseous substances are elastic fluids, called vapors and gases, as air and oxygen gas. [1913 Webster] 3. That with regard to, or about which, anything takes place or is done; the thing aimed at, treated of, or treated; subject of action, discussion, consideration, feeling, complaint, legal action, or the like; theme. "If the matter should be tried by duel." --Bacon. [1913 Webster] Son of God, Savior of men! Thy name Shall be the copious matter of my song. --Milton. [1913 Webster] Every great matter they shall bring unto thee, but every small matter they shall judge. --Ex. xviii. 22. [1913 Webster] 4. That which one has to treat, or with which one has to do; concern; affair; business. [1913 Webster] To help the matter, the alchemists call in many vanities out of astrology. --Bacon. [1913 Webster] Some young female seems to have carried matters so far, that she is ripe for asking advice. --Spectator. [1913 Webster] 5. Affair worthy of account; thing of consequence; importance; significance; moment; -- chiefly in the phrases what matter? no matter, and the like. [1913 Webster] A prophet some, and some a poet, cry; No matter which, so neither of them lie. --Dryden. [1913 Webster] 6. Inducing cause or occasion, especially of anything disagreeable or distressing; difficulty; trouble. [1913 Webster] And this is the matter why interpreters upon that passage in Hosea will not consent it to be a true story, that the prophet took a harlot to wife. --Milton. [1913 Webster] 7. Amount; quantity; portion; space; -- often indefinite. [1913 Webster] Away he goes, . . . a matter of seven miles. --L' Estrange. [1913 Webster] I have thoughts to tarry a small matter. --Congreve. [1913 Webster] No small matter of British forces were commanded over sea the year before. --Milton. [1913 Webster] 8. Substance excreted from living animal bodies; that which is thrown out or discharged in a tumor, boil, or abscess; pus; purulent substance. [1913 Webster] 9. (Metaph.) That which is permanent, or is supposed to be given, and in or upon which changes are effected by psychological or physical processes and relations; -- opposed to form. --Mansel. [1913 Webster] 10. (Print.) Written manuscript, or anything to be set in type; copy; also, type set up and ready to be used, or which has been used, in printing. [1913 Webster] Dead matter (Print.), type which has been used, or which is not to be used, in printing, and is ready for distribution. Live matter (Print.), type set up, but not yet printed from. Matter in bar, Matter of fact. See under Bar, and Fact. Matter of record, anything recorded. Upon the matter, or Upon the whole matter, considering the whole; taking all things into view; all things considered. [1913 Webster] Waller, with Sir William Balfour, exceeded in horse, but were, upon the whole matter, equal in foot. --Clarendon. [1913 Webster]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Matter \Mat"ter\, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Mattered; p. pr. & vb. n. Mattering.] 1. To be of importance; to import; to signify. [1913 Webster] It matters not how they were called. --Locke. [1913 Webster] 2. To form pus or matter, as an abscess; to maturate. [R.] "Each slight sore mattereth." --Sir P. Sidney. [1913 Webster]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Matter \Mat"ter\, v. t. To regard as important; to take account of; to care for. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] He did not matter cold nor hunger. --H. Brooke. [1913 Webster]
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):

matter n 1: a vaguely specified concern; "several matters to attend to"; "it is none of your affair"; "things are going well" [syn: matter, affair, thing] 2: some situation or event that is thought about; "he kept drifting off the topic"; "he had been thinking about the subject for several years"; "it is a matter for the police" [syn: topic, subject, issue, matter] 3: that which has mass and occupies space; "physicists study both the nature of matter and the forces which govern it" 4: a problem; "is anything the matter?" 5: (used with negation) having consequence; "they were friends and it was no matter who won the games" 6: written works (especially in books or magazines); "he always took some reading matter with him on the plane" v 1: have weight; have import, carry weight; "It does not matter much" [syn: count, matter, weigh]
Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0:

326 Moby Thesaurus words for "matter": activities, activity, ado, affair, affairs, air, ambition, amount, amount to something, amplitude, annoyance, anxiety, argument, article, aspect, aspiration, atom, atomic particles, atoms, autograph, bag, basis, be featured, be prominent, be somebody, be something, being, besetment, body, bother, brainchild, brute matter, building block, bulk, burden, business, calling, can of worms, carry weight, case, cause, chapter, chemical element, chyle, circumstance, colostrum, commerce, complication, component, composed matter, composition, computer printout, concern, concernment, condition, consequence, consideration, constituent, content, context, copy, core, count, cut ice, cut some ice, datum, dead matter, detail, difficulty, dilemma, disadvantage, discharge, distillate, distillation, document, doing, draft, earth, edited version, element, elementary particle, elementary unit, elixir, employ, employment, engrossment, enigma, enterprise, entity, episode, essay, essence, essentials, event, evil, extent, fabric, facet, fact, factor, fair copy, fester, festering, fiction, final draft, finished version, fire, first draft, flimsy, focus of attention, focus of interest, force, function, fundamental particle, get top billing, gist, gleet, goal, great ado, grievance, ground, guiding light, guiding star, head, headache, heading, heart, holograph, humor, hyle, hypostasis, ichor, ideal, implication, import, importance, incident, incidental, inconvenience, individual, inspiration, instance, intention, interest, issue, item, job, kernel, labor, lachryma, lactation, letter, leukorrhea, literae scriptae, literary artefact, literary production, literature, live matter, living issue, lodestar, lookout, lucubration, lymph, magnitude, main point, mainspring, manuscript, marrow, mass, material, material world, materiality, matter in hand, mattering, mean, meaning, meaningfulness, measure, measurement, meat, medium, milk, minor detail, minutia, minutiae, molecule, moment, monad, motif, motive, mucor, mucus, natural world, nature, neighborhood, nonfiction, nub, numbers, object, occasion, occupation, occurrence, opus, order, original, paper, parchment, particular, peccant humor, peck of troubles, penscript, phlegm, physical world, piece, piece of writing, pith, play, plenum, poem, point, point at issue, point in question, predicament, principle, printed matter, printout, problem, proceeding, production, purport, purulence, pus, puzzle, quandary, quantity, quantum, question, quintessence, range, rankle, rankling, reading matter, reason, recension, regard, respect, rheum, ripen, rubric, run, running, sake, saliva, sanies, sap, score, screed, scrip, script, scrive, scroll, sea of troubles, second draft, sense, serous fluid, serum, service, significance, signification, signify, situation, snot, soul, source, spirit, spring, stand out, standing matter, star, strength, stuff, subject, subject matter, subject of thought, substance, substratum, sum, sum and substance, suppurate, suppuration, sweat, tangible, tear, teardrop, tell, text, the four elements, the whites, the written word, theme, thing, to-do, topic, transaction, transcript, transcription, trouble, tune, typescript, ulterior motive, undertaking, unit of being, upset, upshot, urine, version, vicinity, vocation, water, weep, weigh, weight, whole, work, worry, writing
Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856):

MATTER. Some substantial or essential thing, opposed to form; facts.
Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856):

MATTER, IMPERTINENT, Equity pleading. That which is altogether irrelevant to the case, that does not appertain or belong to it; id est, qui ad rem non pertinet. 4 Bouv. Inst. n. 4163. See Impertinent.
Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856):

MATTER, SCANDALOUS, equity pleading. A false and malicious statement of facts, not relevant to the cause. But nothing which is positively relevant, however harsh or gross the charge may be, can be considered scandalous. 4 Bouv. Inst. n. 4163. 2. A bill cannot by the general practice, be referred for impertinence after the defendant has answered, or submitted to answer, but it may be referred for scandal at any time, and even upon the application of a stranger to the suit, for he has the right to prevent the records of the court from being made the vehicle of spreading slanders against himself. Id. n. 41f 64.