Definition of neutral in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈn(y)o͞otrəl/


1Not helping or supporting either side in a conflict, disagreement, etc.; impartial: during the Second World War, Portugal was neutral
More example sentences
  • It claims to be a neutral organisation, supported by academic researchers, but is starting from the point of view that there are important figures missing from the arguments so far put forward for wind.
  • This should be enough to make any neutral observer support them, but there is a more important cause.
  • For them the quality and standard of the game is a side issue that is of importance only to the neutral supporters.
impartial, unbiased, unprejudiced, objective, equitable, open-minded, nonpartisan, disinterested, dispassionate, detached, impersonal, unemotional, indifferent, uncommitted
unaligned, nonaligned, unaffiliated, unallied, uninvolved;
1.1Belonging to an impartial party, country, or group: on neutral ground
More example sentences
  • This means that service users in Keighley will either have to meet advocates at Airedale Hospital or travel to Bradford, as the neutral ground provided by the Keighley office will no longer be available to them.
  • You're both too young to remember but some famous people had to argue for Nuremberg because Nuremberg was on a neutral ground and they tried a nation who was at war for war crimes.
  • Carlow and Laois have clashed on two occasions on neutral ground, in Athy and Kilkenny, Carlow winning both.
2Having no strongly marked or positive characteristics or features: the tone was neutral, devoid of sentiment a fairly neutral background will make any small splash of color stand out
More example sentences
  • Jack looked to her mother, his features carefully neutral.
  • She knew that her worries and fears were obvious on her face, and wondered how the other woman could keep her features so neutral.
  • She schooled her features to remain neutral and took another bite of her breakfast as if she were giving his proposal careful consideration.
inoffensive, bland, unobjectionable, unexceptionable, anodyne, unremarkable, ordinary, commonplace;
safe, harmless, innocuous
2.1 Chemistry Neither acid nor alkaline; having a pH of about 7.
Example sentences
  • Clematis prefer a neutral to slightly alkaline soil, so add lime if your soil is on the acidic side. Keep the roots shaded and the tops in sun.
  • Ideally, maples like neutral to acid soil with the addition of peat.
  • A litmus paper can be used to find out whether the soil is acidic, alkaline or neutral.
2.2Electrically neither positive nor negative.
Example sentences
  • And that is what it does, but because the proton has a positive charge and the neutron is neutral, the nucleus somehow has to get rid of a positive charge.
  • Positively charged cations are smaller than their neutral atoms because they lose electrons.
  • Use a neon circuit tester to verify the power is off by touching one lead to an exposed black wire and the other to a metal box or to the neutral wire.


1An impartial or unbiased country or person: he acted as a neutral between the parties Sweden and its fellow neutrals
More example sentences
  • Wedgwood concedes that the U.S. government should ‘continue to respect the sovereignty of allies and neutrals.’
  • If you lie to an ally or a friendly neutral in a small matter, where you don't actually intend to declare war on him, you're sowing seeds of mistrust without gaining any great benefits.
  • Watching the Conservative Party leadership contest, political neutrals are unsure whether to laugh or cry.
2A neutral color or shade, especially light gray or beige.
Example sentences
  • Every splash of white or neutral is anchored by a dose of black.
  • Short or long sleeved, with ruffles or beadwork, in brights and neutrals, they were everywhere, adding extra oomph to halter dresses and fitted tops.
  • Sometimes brown can be used as a neutral and sometimes as a warm color.
3A disengaged position of gears in which the engine is disconnected from the driven parts: she slipped the gear into neutral
More example sentences
  • He may be coasting down a hill with the gears in neutral and the engine switched off; he may be steering a vehicle which is being towed by another.
  • He hurriedly moved the gear in neutral and tried the emergency brake.
  • It decided to stay about two-thirds open, which gives a tidy shove forward, and the only thing I could do was select neutral and try and turn off an engine which was fast trying to grenade itself.
4An electrically neutral point, terminal, conductor, or wire.
Example sentences
  • Some boxes will have two bus bars, one for the ground wire, one for the neutral.
  • If the power quality anomaly seems to be confined to data and communication equipment, try for 0.25 ohm resistance levels for equipment grounds and neutrals.



Pronunciation: /ˈn(y)o͞otrəlē/
Example sentences
  • In this way, every problem can be explained objectively / neutrally.
  • Ask these questions as neutrally and open-mindedly as possible.
  • You have to ask yourself more neutrally and objectively how much information is required to program a complex system?


Late Middle English (as a noun): from Latin neutralis 'of neuter gender', from neuter (see neuter).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: neu·tral

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