Definition of “true” - English Dictionary

“true” in British English

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trueadjective

us uk /truː/

true adjective (NOT FALSE)

A2 (especially of facts or statements) right and not wrong; correct:

[ + that ] Is it true that Mariana and Mark are getting married?
The allegations, if true, could lead to her resignation.
Her story is only partly true.
Would it be true to say that you've never liked Jim?
I suspect she gave a true picture (= accurate description) of what had happened.
I don't believe these exam results are a true reflection of your abilities.
The movie is based on the true story of a London gangster.
She has since admitted that her earlier statement was not strictly (= completely) true.
It used to be very cheap but that's no longer true (= that situation does not now exist).
Alcohol should be consumed in moderation, and this is particularly true for pregnant women.
Parents of young children often become depressed, and this is especially true of single parents.
See also
true enough

correct or accurate but not completely explaining something:

It's true enough that he had doubts about the project, but we have to look further to understand why he resigned.

More examples

  • But I didn't invent the story - everything I told you is true.
  • Do you think it's true that teenage girls are less self-confident than their male peers?
  • I didn't know whether his story was true or not, but I decided to give him the benefit of the doubt.
  • Is it true (that) she's gone back to teaching?
  • I hereby certify (that) the above information is true and accurate.

true adjective (REAL)

B1 [ before noun ] being what exists, rather than what was thought, intended, or stated:

true love
a true friend
There cannot be true democracy without reform of the electoral system.
The true horror of the accident did not become clear until the morning.
come true

B1 If a hope, wish, or dream comes true, it happens although it was unlikely that it would:

I'd always dreamed of owning my own house, but I never thought it would come true.
After all the problems I'd had getting pregnant, Oliver's birth was a dream come true.

More examples

  • This scandal raises new questions about the president's true character.
  • It's when something really bad like this happens that you find out who your true friends are.
  • We each give you a definition of the word printed on the card, and you have to say which you think is the true definition.
  • I feel I've found my true vocation.
  • The hero of the film finally finds his true self.

true adjective (SINCERE)

C2 sincere or loyal, and likely to continue to be so in difficult situations:

There are few true believers in communism left in the party.
She has vowed to remain true to the president whatever happens.
He said he'd repay the money the next day, and true to his word (= as he had promised), he gave it all back to me the following morning.
be true to yourself

to behave according to your beliefs and do what you think is right

true to form/type

Someone who does something true to form or type behaves as other people would have expected from previous experience:

True to form, when it came to his turn to buy the drinks, he said he'd left his wallet at home.

More examples

  • She was a true patriot to the last.
  • He'll be remembered both as a brilliant footballer and as a true sportsman.
  • He has been a true friend to me.
  • She said she would stand by me, and she has been true to her word.
  • His ministers remained true to him throughout the crisis.

truenoun [ U ]

us uk /truː/

trueadverb

us uk /truː/

(Definition of “true” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

“true” in American English

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trueadjective [ -er/-est only ]

us /tru/

true adjective [ -er/-est only ] (CORRECT)

agreeing with fact; not false or wrong:

The story is actually true.
[ + that clause ] It is true that the risk of breaking your hip increases with age.

true adjective [ -er/-est only ] (REAL)

based on what is real, or actual, not imaginary:

His staff tried to keep the true nature of his illness a secret.
true love

Your true love is someone or something you love more than all others:

Her true love is music.

true adjective [ -er/-est only ] (SINCERE)

sincere and loyal:

I am lucky to have true friends.
She is one politician who remains true to her principles.

true adjective [ -er/-est only ] (HAVING NECESSARY QUALITIES)

having all the characteristics necessary to be an example of a particular thing:

Only true deer have antlers.
This portrait is supposed to be a true likeness of Washington.

(Definition of “true” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

“true” in Business English

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trueadjective [ before noun ]

uk /truː/ us ACCOUNTING

used to describe the final total amount of something after extra costs or payments have been added or taken away:

You will need to convert the prices into dollars to see the true cost.
It is illegal to hide transactions or to otherwise misrepresent the true value of a business.
They bought in haste and without calculating the true cost of purchase.

(Definition of “true” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)