/ 5mAtE(r); `mAtL/ n 1 [C] (a) affair, topic or situation being considered ; ; : the heart/core/crux/root of the matter [//] * the matter in hand, under discussion, etc ... * a matter I know little about * `money matters * I don't discuss private matters with my colleagues. . * We have several important matters to deal with at our next meeting. . * (ironic ) There's the small matter of the money you owe me. , . (b) ~ of sth (to sb) situation, problem or result that arouses the specified emotion : matters of growing public concern * This discussion is on a matter of considerable interest to me. . 2 [U] (a) physical substance in general (contrasted with mind or spirit) : inert matter * to study the properties of matter . * The universe is composed of matter. . (b) substance, material or things of a specified kind , , : decaying vegetable matter * waste matter, eg human excreta * reading matter, ie books, newspapers, etc * printed matter, ie forms, leaflets, etc . 3 [U] (fml ) ideas or topic of a book, speech, etc (contrasted with its language or style) , . 4 [U] discharge from the body; pus ; . 5 (idm ) as a matter of fact (used for emphasis ) in reality; to tell the truth ; ; : I'm going there tomorrow, as a matter of fact. , . be no laughing matter => laughing: for `that matter (used to indicate that a second category, topic, etc is as relevant as the first , ): Don't talk like that to your mother, or to anyone else for that matter. , . in the matter of sth (dated fml , ) concerning sth : I want to speak to her in the matter of my salary. . it's all, only, etc a matter of `time (before...) this consequence is inevitable though it may not happen immediately , ; : It's simply a matter of time before the rebels are crushed. . let the matter `drop/`rest stop mentioning sth or trying to change it : She reluctantly agreed to let the matter drop. . make matters `worse make an already difficult situation more difficult : Her attempts to calm them down only made matters worse. , . (as) a matter of `course (as) a regular habit or usual procedure ; : I check my in-tray every morning as a matter of course. . (be) the matter (with sb/sth) (infml ) the reason for unhappiness, pain, problems, etc (used esp in the expressions shown) , : What's the matter with him? ? * Is anything the matter? ? * There's nothing the matter with it. . a matter of `hours, `minutes, `days, etc; a matter of `pounds, `feet, `ounces, etc (a) not more than ; : I'll be back in a matter of hours. . * It's a matter of a few more miles, that's all. , . (b) not less than ; : It may be a matter of months before it's ready. . * You realize it'll be a matter of days (ie two days or more) before we get news? , ? a ,matter of ,life and `death issue that is crucial to survival, success, etc ; : Of course this must have priority it's a matter of life and death. --.a matter of o`pinion issue on which there is disagreement: `She's a fine singer.' `That's a matter of opinion.' ｀.＇｀.＇ (be) a matter of sth/doing sth situation, question or issue that depends on sth else : Dealing with these problems is all a matter of experience. . * Success in business is simply a matter of knowing when to take a chance. . mind over matter => mind1. no matter; be/make no matter (to sb) (that/whether...) be of no importance (to sb) : `I can't do it.' `No matter, I'll do it myself.' ｀.＇｀, .＇ * It's no matter to me whether you arrive early or late. . no matter who, what, where, etc whoever, whatever, wherever, etc : Don't open the door, no matter who comes. . * Don't trust him, no matter what he says. , . not mince matters/words => mince. take matters into one's own hands take action oneself rather than waiting for others to act ; .