Definition of substantial in English:

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Pronunciation: /səbˈstanʃ(ə)l/


1Of considerable importance, size, or worth: a substantial amount of cash
More example sentences
  • This finding is substantial considering the small size of the sample.
  • But in any case, it is worth a very substantial amount of money to our economy - certainly in the order of a billion dollars or more.
  • The robbers then ransacked the premises and stole £3,000 worth of cigarettes and a substantial amount of cash.
considerable, real, material, weighty, solid, sizeable, meaningful, significant, important, notable, major, marked, valuable, useful, worthwhile
sizeable, considerable, significant, large, ample, appreciable, goodly, decent
informal tidy
1.1Strongly built or made: a row of substantial Victorian villas
More example sentences
  • The resonator is wide in the bass, with a substantial, strongly curved pillar and neck.
  • The property, which sits among the substantial Victorian villas of Helensburgh's desirable upper west end, is laid out over two floors and sits on approximately half an acre of land.
  • I am staying at the exclusive marina of Port St Charles, on the west of the island, a coastline characterised by grand hotels, substantial villas and private mansions.
1.2(Of a meal) large and filling: breakfast is a substantial buffet the first meal of the day should be substantial
More example sentences
  • Indicators of consistent poverty include lack of heating, at least one day in the previous two weeks without a substantial meal, no warm waterproof overcoat or only one pair of strong shoes.
  • A good, substantial meal, perhaps more akin to first-rate home cooking than wildly fancy restaurant food, but none the worse for that.
  • As well as the restrictions regarding supervision and time, the law now insists that a substantial meal be served at the function.
1.3Important in material or social terms; wealthy: a substantial Devon family
More example sentences
  • Enjoying a substantial social status, they produced topographical memoirs that provided information specifically devoted to the management of colonies by the state.
  • There's something rather substantial about him.
informal in the money, rolling in it, loaded, stinking rich, quids in
2Concerning the essentials of something: there was substantial agreement on changing policies
More example sentences
  • It is concerned with what is substantial (essentialities, or what makes a thing what it is) in things, processes and relations.
  • But I have two substantial concerns over abortion.
  • Yet, it appears that the government was not concerned with any substantial violation of the law in this case.
fundamental, essential, basic
3Real and tangible rather than imaginary: spirits are shadowy, human beings substantial
More example sentences
  • It gave voters a substantial and tangible personal reward and it was something Labour would never do.
  • He argues that social activists need to realise that if they want substantial and tangible results, it is the government above all else which they need to influence.
  • There is mind, but it is not tangible or substantial.



Pronunciation: /səbstanʃɪˈalɪti/
Example sentences
  • Even in death his body, whose location has been wrongly recorded on the cemetery's list, has only the substantiality she chooses to give him.
  • The Tribunal must consider the materiality and substantiality of the employer's reason.
  • There is a gap between the premiss of transcendental psychology - the transcendental unity of apperception - and its conclusion - the substantiality of the soul.


Middle English: from Old French substantiel or Christian Latin substantialis, from substantia 'being, essence' (see substance).

Words that rhyme with substantial

circumstantial, financial

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: sub¦stan|tial

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