American English

Definition of subject noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    noun [countable]
    , NAmE//ˈsʌbdʒɪkt//
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    of conversation/book
  1. 1a thing or person that is being discussed, described, or dealt with an unpleasant subject of conversation books on many different subjects a magazine article on the subject of space travel I have nothing more to say on the subject. I wish you'd change the subject (= talk about something else). How did we get onto the subject of marriage? We seem to have gotten off the subject we're meant to be discussing. Nelson Mandela is the subject of a new biography. Climate change is still very much a subject for debate.
  2. at school/college
  3. 2an area of knowledge studied in a school, college, etc. Biology is my favorite subject.
  4. of picture/photograph
  5. 3a person or thing that is the main feature of a picture or photograph, or that a work of art is based on Focus the camera on the subject. Classical landscapes were a popular subject with many 18th century painters.
  6. of experiment
  7. 4a person or thing being used to study something, especially in an experiment We need male subjects between the ages of 18 and 25 for the experiment.
  8. grammar
  9. 5a noun, noun phrase, or pronoun representing the person or thing that performs the action of the verb (I in I sat down), about which something is stated (the house in the house is very old), or, in a passive sentence, that is affected by the action of the verb (the tree in the tree was blown down in the storm) compare object, predicate
  10. of country
  11. 6a person who has the right to belong to a particular country, especially one with a king or queen a British subject
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: subject