Definition of mature in English:



  • 1Fully developed physically; full-grown.

    ‘she was now a mature woman’
    ‘owls are sexually mature at one year’
    ‘mature trees’
    • ‘The adult coat begins to appear when the Pom is a year old, but that coat requires months of growth before it is fully mature.’
    • ‘The biggest problem was that he would not be physically mature.’
    • ‘The cubs are becoming more thick-set like fully mature foxes.’
    • ‘Watch for fully mature, dry seedpods and collect them before they shatter.’
    • ‘What we'll do is lower the production and seek to harvest more mature grapes.’
    • ‘The flesh of the mature nut was grated and pressed to produce a cream.’
    • ‘During that thousand years, the mature adult of each generation would look more like a younger chimp than the mature adult of the generation before.’
    • ‘Skins constitute between five and 12 per cent by weight of a mature grape berry, depending on the vine variety.’
    • ‘Once the seed is fully mature, it is usually too hard to bite.’
    • ‘At the same time, however, biology is very far from being a fully mature science.’
    • ‘However, it is clear that only a small fraction of the spermatids develop into mature spermatozoa in males.’
    • ‘I get jealous of her because she's physically more mature - tall and curvy.’
    • ‘In mature tomato, glucose and fructose constitute the major sugars, and citric and malic acids are the major organic acids.’
    • ‘No mature fruits had more than two seedless carpels.’
    • ‘Boys are almost fully mature at this point and have developed a tough outer shell that protects them from their natural predators.’
    • ‘Flower number was obtained by adding the number of scars left by aborted flowers and fruits to the number of mature fruits.’
    • ‘Bigger athletes and sprinters generally start earlier than those who are less mature physically.’
    • ‘Studies on the bamboo cell wall have focussed mainly on fully elongated and mature fibres.’
    • ‘Very wet soil encourages mature peanuts to sprout in the ground.’
    • ‘Lemurs do not fully mature until they are two-and-a-half years old, and until then most of their time is spent clinging to their mother.’
    adult, grown-up, grown, fully grown, full-grown, of age, fully developed, fully fledged, in one's prime, in full bloom, nubile
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    1. 1.1Having reached an advanced stage of mental or emotional development characteristic of an adult.
      ‘a young man mature beyond his years’
      • ‘I suppose we're just going to have to deal with it like mature adults.’
      • ‘She's mature beyond her years in terms of her ability to pay attention to every single detail of her preparation.’
      • ‘Does that mean I'm becoming a more emotionally and spiritually mature adult?’
      • ‘‘We strongly encourage older applicants for our courses and in my experience they are more mature,’ he added.’
      • ‘Of course, others might have been taken over by hysterical hordes, but what I saw was a mature discussion among mature people.’
      • ‘He's mature beyond his years, practices extremely well, works really hard, soaks things up.’
      • ‘Immature teens always try to prove that they are mature and they are responsible, but the only thing they forget at that time is that one mistake can ruin their life.’
      • ‘Tell me, is there a single person in the world who doesn't think he is mature beyond his years?’
      • ‘You may think that dance patrons would be mainly mature persons but that is hardly the case.’
      • ‘But these are legitimate disagreements between mature people, and you wouldn't let a thing like that get in the way.’
      • ‘I don't deserve this and I am too mature to play silly emotional games.’
      • ‘He enjoys the company of mature people, people who are tolerant and have the patience to reach a sensible agreement with other people.’
      • ‘He is now mature enough emotionally to reside in the men's house without need of running home to be with his mother.’
      • ‘Our programme is not likely to work well with younger or less mature people.’
      • ‘By the time a child has reached their teens, parents feel that they are mature enough to cope with more adult content, and control shifts accordingly.’
      • ‘And so I did what any mature adult would do in my situation.’
      • ‘We're going to act like normal, mature adults and choose normal children's names.’
      • ‘They were mature adults and the assessment should be based on their own income.’
      • ‘It bothered her beyond belief that a mature adult would say such a thing, especially in front of two children.’
      • ‘Today's young men and women are more mature, responsible and competent.’
      sensible, responsible, adult, level-headed, reliable, dependable
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    2. 1.2(of thought or planning) careful and thorough.
      ‘on mature reflection he decided they should not go’
      • ‘However, upon mature reflection this wasn't the best price for the quality delivered.’
      • ‘As we enter the 21st century, the time has come, surely, for a period of mature reflection.’
      • ‘These two books are the fruits of mature and careful scholarship.’
      • ‘What he provides instead is a substantial elaboration of the original, clarifying and extending it with the benefit of mature reflection.’
      • ‘It's also important to have a mature rather than a gung ho approach.’
      • ‘If it be that more mature consideration suggested that that was erroneous, then one sees an appeal to the Court of Appeal.’
      • ‘He should use the Christmas period for mature reflection and then tender his resignation.’
      • ‘But I would hope that, on mature reflection, he would not be advised to take any purely technical point on service.’
      • ‘There are strong indications that our judges make decisions without mature consideration.’
      • ‘On mature consideration though, perhaps those black puddings of theirs count as weapons of mass destruction and merit a pre-emptive strike.’
      • ‘It may be that on mature reflection, you decide to complete the transaction having weighed up all the pros and cons.’
      careful, thorough, deep, considered, methodical
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    3. 1.3Used euphemistically to describe someone as being middle-aged or old.
      ‘Miss Walker was a mature lady when she married’
      • ‘I've been really impressed by the way in which so many companies have at last woken up to the special needs of mature skin.’
      • ‘Oily and mature skin types benefit the most from this type of exfoliation.’
      • ‘When the rose petals and hips are turned into face creams they have amazing healing properties, and so are ideal for mature or sensitive skins.’
      • ‘But reflecting in my mature middle-age, I still think she could have tried harder.’
      • ‘Tall, mature, single, blue-blooded aristocrat seeks tall, mature foxy lady who loves dressing in furs.’
      • ‘Many years ago, when I lived in Paris, an extremely elegant, mature French lady told me the secret of applying a scent properly.’
      • ‘I have mature skin and I massage my face every night with creams to prevent ageing.’
      • ‘Increasingly women and mature aged Australians are at the cutting edge of this do-it-yourself enterprise culture.’
      • ‘Over the last century face powder has undergone a revolution, but at times it still looked caked or floury on mature skin.’
      • ‘We are especially seeking more mature people who are perhaps not currently working or who have retired and wish to use their skills and experience in a different way.’
      • ‘All are hypoallergenic and super-pure so they're perfect for thin and delicate mature skins.’
      • ‘In fact, farther to the southeast along the same fault zone, there are some more seismic gaps that are what we might describe as mature.’
      wise, sensible, experienced, worldly-wise, knowledgeable, well versed, familiar, practised, skilled, skilful, adept, expert, veteran
      elderly, aged, older, senior, advanced in years, up in years, getting on
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    4. 1.4(of a style) fully developed.
      ‘Van Gogh's mature work’
      • ‘A lot of products are technologically mature, so the advances are in usability.’
      • ‘These are songs that demonstrate a mature talent at work - both vocally and lyrically.’
      • ‘Against the odds, I acquired an elegant and mature writing style years ahead of my age.’
      • ‘In fact, I proudly imagined myself to be the only twelve year old in the UK with such advanced, mature tastes for my age.’
      • ‘They all come out with much more advanced, mature golf swings.’
      • ‘So, I was looking forward to the arrival at the National Gallery of a mature and authentic view of him: a proper assessment.’
    5. 1.5(of certain foodstuffs or drinks) ready for consumption.
      • ‘I absolutely loved its mature cheddar and those little cakes with white sugar on top.’
      • ‘More mature cheeses are firmer and can be crumbled over pasta or soup, or grilled and served on a salad dressed with walnut oil.’
      • ‘It also goes with mature cheddar, Parmesan and other strong, hard cheeses, and it's worth trying with runny, gluey cheeses, too.’
      • ‘A nice chunk of mature cheddar is fabulous on toast.’
      • ‘Food that I would normally savour, like mature cheese, bacon, or roast beef, has tasted dry and dead in my mouth.’
      • ‘After all, he smiled, it's imperative to let mature wine breathe.’
      • ‘Stilton or a very mature Cheddar have enough of a tang to be interesting, Caerphilly or Wensleydale slightly less so.’
      • ‘Certainly, Cabernets will age, but they take longer than other varieties and I wanted some mature wine sooner.’
      • ‘At last those who buy to drink now will have the chance to experience mature wine from France's classic regions.’
      • ‘A selection of fine mature cheeses and some roasted hazelnuts, or a single dry slice of brown bread?’
      • ‘Again, if the rim is brown, it's probably mature and ready to drink.’
      • ‘This is a startlingly complex and mature wine given its youth.’
      • ‘My eldest, in a knowing way, asked me if mature cheese is made out of milk from old cows.’
      • ‘Beer, 15 year-old mature wine and whiskey - it's up to you what suits your mood best.’
      • ‘If you're preparing Welsh rarebit, for example, use a strong-tasting, mature cheese rather than a mild variety.’
      • ‘While most of the wines were of very recent vintage, we did taste one mature wine, and it was excellent.’
      ripe, ripened, mellow, ready, seasoned, full-flavoured
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  • 2Denoting an economy, industry, or market that has developed to a point where substantial expansion and investment no longer takes place.

    • ‘Investors in mature industries are those who want to enjoy the potential for growth but also avoid extreme highs and lows.’
    • ‘The forecast was for growth levels to echo those of other mature industries, when the current sectoral downturn ends.’
    • ‘In any mature industry, a 1 percent boost would be considered good news.’
    • ‘Cyclical trends tend to be shorter and more applicable in mature markets.’
    • ‘The former is a mature market in most developed countries; the latter shows strength in developing nations.’
    • ‘But if the conventional capital markets don't want to touch mature industries, where can these orphan companies turn for finance?’
    • ‘As for implementing a flat tax in a mature economy, we may soon be able to observe a pilot scheme.’
    • ‘Risk-based pricing has also enabled the development of a mature secondary market in consumer debt.’
    • ‘Markets are highly saturated, and the industry is mature in the developed world.’
    • ‘The growth potential for brewers is not in mature European markets.’
    • ‘Margins are tightening and growth slowing to the levels of more mature markets.’
    • ‘Some economists argue that info tech is a mature industry that cannot expect to grow much faster than the rest of the economy.’
    • ‘In the midst of this, our president is determined to cut taxes to revive a mature economy.’
    • ‘The company's biggest challenge is in its mature US home market.’
    • ‘The corporate banking market in Ireland is mature, but there is still scope for growth internationally.’
    • ‘We realized the first year we looked at this that we were spending far too much money on mature markets.’
    • ‘None of these offers an auspicious precedent or any clear parallel for introducing a flat tax to a mature economy.’
    • ‘The clues to the future of the industrial markets will be found in closely analyzing how more mature markets have evolved.’
    • ‘The industry is more mature than it was a decade ago, when it last rose and fell.’
    • ‘However, there is a problem here in that almost every other mature economy in Europe wants tax harmonisation.’
  • 3(of a bill) due for payment.

    • ‘It can point the way to creating a bond between two people, but it is not itself a mature bond.’


  • 1(of an organism) become physically mature.

    ‘children mature at different ages’
    ‘the trees take at least thirty years to mature’
    ‘she matured into a woman’
    • ‘The most intensive period of speech and language development for humans is during the first three years of life, a period when the brain is developing and maturing.’
    • ‘Not only did they survive, but every single one of my seedlings matured into a sturdy adolescent.’
    • ‘In the intervening years, he has matured into a more complete forward.’
    • ‘Children who mature on time or a little early have status with their peers; those who mature late feel left out and inadequate.’
    • ‘Yorkshire's most famous soul singer has matured into a handsome, outwardly respectable middle-aged man with a raffish undertow.’
    • ‘Some plants matured more rapidly and developed spikes from the first node.’
    • ‘The hollow cavities were formed as the animal matured and grew to adulthood, erasing the early growth rings.’
    • ‘They have matured into a side with a backbone of leaders, and excellent mid field and a set of forwards which are lethal.’
    • ‘Children mature so quickly that one has to enjoy the various stages of their development.’
    • ‘While this may have been so at point of entry, they have certainly matured into storytellers, weaving tales with a sense of theatre.’
    • ‘Doctors can help your child preserve his or her adult height potential as well as limit the emotional and social difficulties your child may face from maturing early.’
    • ‘If he stayed around long enough, he'd see his teenage bride had matured into a competent, successful businesswoman.’
    • ‘Models that have been married or have borne children are most welcome, for their bodies have been well developed and matured, and are more easily drawn.’
    • ‘He had watched me since I had matured into womanhood, all the while pressuring his father to arrange the marriage.’
    • ‘Worms normally go through four stages as they mature into adults.’
    • ‘Many developmental and educational psychologists agree that young adults mature through a sequence of stages.’
    • ‘They've matured into a tight live band, and if some of the quirkiness of old has been ironed out the fact that they're writing the best songs of their career more than makes up for it.’
    • ‘Parrots are very intelligent and go through development stages as they mature and assert their will like rebellious teenagers.’
    • ‘The trapping was prompted by a drop in numbers as it was estimated that only around five per cent of all spawnings actually matured into young fish.’
    • ‘Worker and queen larvae mature in different cells but that makes little difference in their development.’
    develop, grow, evolve, bloom, blossom, flourish, thrive, come to fruition
    be fully grown, be full-grown, be fully developed, develop fully, come of age, become adult, reach adulthood, reach maturity
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    1. 1.1(of a person) reach an advanced stage of mental or emotional development.
      ‘men mature as they grow older’
      • ‘The experience of pain, the experience of stress, that is what puts those wrinkles upon our faces so rapidly, and that is what matures us.’
      • ‘He had matured and he was ready to be a father no matter what it took.’
      • ‘He matured much faster than the other boys I knew, if only mentally.’
      • ‘Report writers say that you have matured and improved your coping strategies.’
      • ‘Nevertheless, what we do retain is the spirit, which matures and develops as we progress.’
      • ‘He seems to have matured a little in the past couple of years.’
      • ‘However, thinking seems to be more of an art than a natural talent, something learned and developed as one matures in life.’
      • ‘It's impossible to project how players will physically grow and mature emotionally.’
      • ‘In many ways, I guess I matured a lot by looking after myself for 7 years.’
      • ‘Then, when I matured a little, I saw what he had had to give up for me.’
      • ‘His son was having a great time, and was maturing every day away from his mother.’
      • ‘I've developed, matured, settled down, have a lot more common sense.’
      become more adult, become more responsible, become more sensible, grow up
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    2. 1.2(with reference to certain foodstuffs or drinks) become or cause to become ready for consumption.
      [no object] ‘leave the cheese to mature’
      [with object] ‘the Scotch is matured for a minimum of three years’
      • ‘It is left to mature in the cellar and the final ripening stage takes place in a spruce wood box, where the cheese is kept for at least 3 weeks.’
      • ‘Two styles were released after maturing for three and five years respectively in French and American oak; only a five-year-old vintage dated version is now made.’
      • ‘It should be ready to drink in six months but can be left to mature for at least 4 years.’
      • ‘Cheddar has to be kept for a long time before it matures, whereas Caerphilly ripens in 10 days.’
      • ‘Leaving them to mature in casks or bottles improved things further and France's loss was very much Portugal's gain.’
      • ‘After this it is up to the producer how much longer they mature the cheese.’
      • ‘Drying foods does not stop the enzymatic action that causes fruit to mature and decay; it only slows it down.’
      • ‘The mussels then take between 15 months and two years to mature to marketable quality when they are harvested.’
      • ‘But there is something magical about whole cheese that needs to be properly cared for and lovingly matured.’
      • ‘The owner produces it in small quantities and he matures it in earthenware containers rather than in wooden barrels as most vineyards do today.’
      • ‘They have a rich unpasturised flavour, are mould ripened and often ‘flow’ as they mature.’
      • ‘In vinegar that has matured for 12 years, there is an expected 85-percent evaporation.’
      • ‘And the rule of the thumb is; the longer the cheese takes to mature, the sharper or stronger the taste it develops.’
      • ‘The cellar ensures that wines are stored at a constant temperature for conserving and maturing in the proper conditions.’
      ripen, grow ripe, become ripe, mellow, become mellow, age
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  • 2(of an insurance policy, security, etc.) reach the end of its term and hence become payable.

    • ‘If your policy is due to mature after the end of December 2005, you should get some top-up payment.’
    • ‘They pay a fixed interest rate until they mature, when the issuer returns your principal.’
    • ‘It's reckoned that the average policy yet to mature will come up several thousand pounds short.’
    • ‘With a discounted gift scheme, you make a gift into a series of single-premium insurance policies designed to mature in different years.’
    • ‘However, she was sold a policy that matured at 65.’
    • ‘The bond will mature in two years and carry 4 per cent interest.’
    • ‘Half of it matures in 2006 or earlier, the rest in 2008.’
    • ‘Of the total debt stock, 80 per cent was private debt and almost 36 per cent was short term, maturing in 12 months or less.’
    • ‘You can get higher yields by investing in bonds that mature in 20 to 30 years.’
    • ‘At that point, I thought if we waited five years for my policy to mature, at least I'd get back all of my $33,000.’
    • ‘Let's say that you have a policy due to mature in 2013.’
    • ‘If I didn't trust the stock market to create a lump sum to pay off my home loan when it matured, then why on earth did I trust it to produce enough for my retirement pot at the end of my working life?’
    • ‘For example, let's say that your endowment is predicted to leave you £20,000 short when it matures.’
    • ‘The fact that they mature in April 2006, a month before the last possible date for the next election, is surely coincidental!’
    • ‘The loan programme was originally created for executives who owed taxes on shares of restricted stock that had matured.’
    • ‘They have billions of dollars of securities which will be maturing in November and December too…’
    • ‘And later, if you want to sell the bond before it matures, there will be a tremendous markdown on its value.’
    • ‘One estimate is that fewer than one in five existing policies will mature with a value large enough to pay off the associated mortgage.’
    • ‘It pays a fixed rate of interest until it matures.’
    • ‘It pays regular interest until it matures, at which point you get your money back.’


Late Middle English: from Latin maturus timely, ripe; perhaps related to matins.