substance

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English[edit]

English Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old French substance, from Latin substantia (substance, essence), from substāns, present active participle of substō (exist, literally stand under), from sub + stō (stand).

Pronunciation[edit]

  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈsʌbstəns/, [ˈsʌbstənts]
  • (file)
  • (file)

Noun[edit]

substance (countable and uncountable, plural substances)

  1. Physical matter; material.
    • 1699, William Temple, Heads designed for an essay on conversations
      Study gives strength to the mind; conversation, grace: the first apt to give stiffness, the other suppleness: one gives substance and form to the statue, the other polishes it.
    • 2013 July 20, “Welcome to the plastisphere”, in The Economist, volume 408, number 8845:
      Plastics are energy-rich substances, which is why many of them burn so readily. Any organism that could unlock and use that energy would do well in the Anthropocene. Terrestrial bacteria and fungi which can manage this trick are already familiar to experts in the field.
    Synonyms: matter, stuff
  2. The essential part of anything; the most vital part.
    • (Can we date this quote by John Dryden and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      Heroic virtue did his actions guide, / And he the substance, not the appearance, chose.
    • (Can we date this quote by Bishop Burnet and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      This edition is the same in substance with the Latin.
    • (Can we date this quote by Edmund Burke and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      It is insolent in words, in manner; but in substance it is not only insulting, but alarming.
    Synonyms: crux, gist
  3. Substantiality; solidity; firmness.
    Some textile fabrics have little substance.
  4. Material possessions; estate; property; resources.
    a man of substance
  5. A form of matter that has constant chemical composition and characteristic properties.
  6. Drugs (illegal narcotics)
    substance abuse
    Synonyms: dope, gear
  7. (theology) Hypostasis.

Synonyms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.

Verb[edit]

substance (third-person singular simple present substances, present participle substancing, simple past and past participle substanced)

  1. (rare, transitive) To give substance to; to make real or substantial.
    • 1873, Adeline Dutton Train Whitney, The Other Girls, page 335:
      If life were nothing but what gets phrased and substanced, the world might as well be rolled up and laid away again in darkness.
    • 1982, Dhupaty V. K. Raghavacharyulu, The Song of the Red Rose and Other Poems, page 78:
      The calm ruminating / Reverie, substancing / Intellect into emotion, / Is shelter enough for love / Unhumiliated by faith.

See also[edit]


French[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowed from Latin substantia (substance, essence), from substāns, present active participle of substō (exist, literally stand under), from sub + stō (stand).

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

substance f (plural substances)

  1. substance

Derived terms[edit]

Further reading[edit]

Anagrams[edit]


Old French[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowed from Latin substantia.

Noun[edit]

substance f (oblique plural substances, nominative singular substance, nominative plural substances)

  1. most essential; substantial part
  2. existence

Related terms[edit]

Descendants[edit]

  • English: substance
  • French: substance