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re·al 1 (rēəl, rēl)
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adj.
1.
a. Being or occurring in fact or actuality; having verifiable existence: real objects; a real illness.
b. True and actual; not imaginary, alleged, or ideal: real people, not ghosts; a film based on real life.
c. Of or founded on practical matters and concerns: a recent graduate experiencing the real world for the first time.
2. Genuine and authentic; not artificial or spurious: real mink; real humility.
3. Being no less than what is stated; worthy of the name: a real friend.
4. Free of pretense, falsehood, or affectation: tourists hoping for a real experience on the guided tour.
5. Not to be taken lightly; serious: in real trouble.
6. Philosophy Existing objectively in the world regardless of subjectivity or conventions of thought or language.
7. Relating to, being, or having value reckoned by actual purchasing power: real income; real growth.
8. Physics Of, relating to, or being an image formed by light rays that converge in space.
9. Mathematics Of, relating to, or being a real number.
10. Law Of or relating to stationary or fixed property, such as buildings or land.
adv.
Informal
Very: I'm real sorry about that.
n.
1. A thing or whole having actual existence. Often used with the: theories beyond the realm of the real.
2. Mathematics A real number.
Idiom:
for real Slang
Truly so in fact or actuality: "Is this place for real? A wolf in a ... leisure suit and a cow in a print dress wait patiently on the couch in the lobby" (Teresa Carson).

[Middle English, from Old French, from Late Latin reālis, from Latin rēs, thing; see rē- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]

realness n.

Synonyms: real1, actual, true, existent
These adjectives mean not being imaginary but having verifiable existence. Real implies authenticity, genuineness, or factuality: Don't lose the bracelet; it's made of real gold. She showed real sympathy for my predicament.
Actual means existing and not merely potential or possible: "rocks, trees ... the actual world" (Henry David Thoreau).
True implies consistency with fact, reality, or actuality: "It is undesirable to believe a proposition when there is no ground whatever for supposing it true" (Bertrand Russell).
Existent applies to what has life or being: Much of the beluga caviar existent in the world is found near the Caspian Sea. See Also Synonyms at authentic.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 
re·al 2 (rā-äl)
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n. pl. re·als or re·al·es (-älĕs)
A silver coin formerly used in Spain and Latin America.

[Spanish, royal, real, from Latin rēgālis, royal, from rēx, rēg-, king; see reg- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 
re·al 3 (rā-äl)
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n. pl. re·ais (rā-īsh)
1. A unit of currency formerly used in Portugal.
2. See Table at currency.

[Portuguese, royal, real, from Latin rēgālis, royal; see REAL2.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

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