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[muh-teer-ee-uh-lahyz] /məˈtɪər i əˌlaɪz/
verb (used without object), materialized, materializing.
to come into perceptible existence; appear; become actual or real; be realized or carried out:
Our plans never materialized.
to assume material or bodily form; become corporeal:
The ghost materialized before Hamlet.
verb (used with object), materialized, materializing.
to give material form to; realize:
to materialize an ambition.
to invest with material attributes:
to materialize abstract ideas with metaphors.
to make physically perceptible; cause (a spirit or the like) to appear in bodily form.
to render materialistic.
Also, especially British, materialise.
1700-10; material + -ize
Related forms
materialization, noun
materializer, noun
rematerialization, noun
rematerialize, verb, rematerialized, rematerializing.
unmaterialized, adjective
1. emerge, show, rise, issue. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for materialized
  • All of these phenomena are merely materialized representations of power, not globalisation.
  • But money for community mental health care never materialized.
  • Had different choices been made early, it's possible a stronger reform could have materialized.
  • Particularly because such scarcities have never materialized.
  • In the setting sun, a drum-and-dance session soon materialized around the hotel pool.
  • In the past few years a new developer with deep pockets has materialized.
  • Three years ago a road through the mountains materialized, cutting the trip to the nearest town from two days to two hours.
  • Then two animals materialized out of the litter below-bush pig.
  • The dinner with the president never materialized and the subsequent interviews were the off target and boring.
  • Of course all that advice proved wrong, and the promised openings never materialized.
British Dictionary definitions for materialized


(intransitive) to become fact; actually happen: our hopes never materialized
to invest or become invested with a physical shape or form
to cause (a spirit, as of a dead person) to appear in material form or (of a spirit) to appear in such form
(intransitive) to take shape; become tangible: after hours of discussion, the project finally began to materialize
(physics) to form (material particles) from energy, as in pair production
Derived Forms
materialization, materialisation, noun
materializer, materialiser, noun
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
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Word Origin and History for materialized



1710, "represent as material," from material (adj.) + -ize. Meaning "appear in bodily form" is 1880, in spiritualism. Related: Materialized; materializing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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