Subject can mean "topic," as in "Let's change the subject." It can also mean "to make someone do something," as in "Don't let your dad subject you to an hour-long lecture on fishing." It can also mean everyone in a country who is not the ruler, as in "The king greeted his subjects when he returned from abroad."

A subject could be a broad branch of knowledge, like Biology, or a very narrow focus, like the effects of drought on avocados. If you are painting a portrait, the person posing for you is your subject. Subject can also mean beholden, or subordinate. If you are traveling in England, but not an English subject, or citizen, then you are still subject to English law.

Definitions of subject
  1. noun
    some situation or event that is thought about
    “he had been thinking about the subject for several years”
    synonyms: issue, matter, topic
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    a subject of study
    blind spot
    a subject about which you are ignorant or prejudiced and fail to exercise good judgment
    the topic that a person, committee, or piece of research is expected to deal with or has authority to deal with
    res adjudicata, res judicata
    a matter already settled in court; cannot be raised again
    gray area, grey area
    an intermediate area; a topic that is not clearly one thing or the other
    an area of knowledge or interest
    type of:
    cognitive content, content, mental object
    the sum or range of what has been perceived, discovered, or learned
  2. noun
    a branch of knowledge
    “teachers should be well trained in their subject
    synonyms: bailiwick, discipline, field, field of study, study, subject area, subject field
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    the study of the supernatural
    communication theory, communications
    the discipline that studies the principles of transmiting information and the methods by which it is delivered (as print or radio or television etc.)
    the principal field of study of a student at a university
    an undeveloped field of study; a topic inviting research and development
    the study or investigation of ancestry and family history
    the study of the relative growth of a part of an organism in relation to the growth of the whole
    the scientific study of documents and handwriting etc. especially to determine authorship or authenticity
    an informal word (abstracted from words with this ending) for some unidentified branch of knowledge
    science, scientific discipline
    a particular branch of scientific knowledge
    the discipline dealing with the principles of design and construction and ornamentation of fine buildings
    applied science, engineering, engineering science, technology
    the discipline dealing with the art or science of applying scientific knowledge to practical problems
    futuristics, futurology
    the study or prediction of future developments on the basis of existing conditions
    arts, humanistic discipline, humanities, liberal arts
    studies intended to provide general knowledge and intellectual skills (rather than occupational or professional skills)
    divinity, theology
    the rational and systematic study of religion and its influences and of the nature of religious truth
    military science
    the discipline dealing with the principles of warfare
    the study of methods of escaping (especially as a form of entertainment)
    the study of handwriting (especially as an indicator of the writer's character or disposition)
    the study of the supposed occult influence of numbers on human affairs
    the study of origins and first things
    the study of the origins and genealogy of the gods
    a branch of study or knowledge involving the observation, investigation, and discovery of general laws or truths that can be tested systematically
    the art or study of formal debate and argumentation
    natural history
    the scientific study of plants or animals (more observational than experimental) usually published in popular magazines rather than in academic journals
    the study or the use of symbols and symbolism
    natural science, science
    the sciences involved in the study of the physical world and its phenomena
    math, mathematics, maths
    a science (or group of related sciences) dealing with the logic of quantity and shape and arrangement
    agronomy, scientific agriculture
    the application of soil and plant sciences to land management and crop production
    the study of plant nutrition and growth especially as a way to increase crop yield
    science of soils in relation to crops
    architectonics, tectonics
    the science of architecture
    landscape architecture
    the branch of architecture dealing with the arrangement of land and buildings for human use and enjoyment
    urban planning
    the branch of architecture dealing with the design and organization of urban space and activities
    interior design
    the branch of architecture dealing with the selection and organization of furnishings for an architectural interior
    the science and technology of metals
    aeronautical engineering
    the branch of engineering science concerned with the design and construction of aircraft
    application of biological principles to the study and design of engineering systems (especially electronic systems)
    bioengineering, biotechnology, ergonomics
    the branch of engineering science in which biological science is used to study the relation between workers and their environments
    chemical engineering
    the branch of engineering that is concerned with the design and construction and operation of the plants and machinery used in industrial chemical processes
    civil engineering
    the branch of engineering concerned with the design and construction of such public works as dams or bridges
    EE, electrical engineering
    the branch of engineering science that studies the uses of electricity and the equipment for power generation and distribution and the control of machines and communication
    computer science, computing
    the branch of engineering science that studies (with the aid of computers) computable processes and structures
    architectural engineering
    the branch of engineering that deals with the construction of buildings (as distinguished from architecture as a design art)
    industrial engineering, industrial management
    the branch of engineering that deals with the creation and management of systems that integrate people and materials and energy in productive ways
    IT, information technology
    the branch of engineering that deals with the use of computers and telecommunications to retrieve and store and transmit information
    mechanical engineering
    the branch of engineering that deals with the design and construction and operation of machinery
    the branch of engineering that deals with things smaller than 100 nanometers (especially with the manipulation of individual molecules)
    nuclear engineering
    the branch of engineering concerned with the design and construction and operation of nuclear reactors
    naval engineering
    the branch of engineering that deals with the design and construction and operation of ships
    the branch of engineering science that studies rocket design and operation
    the scientific study of measurement
    the scientific study of food and drink (especially in humans)
    psychological science, psychology
    the science of mental life
    IP, informatics, information processing, information science
    the sciences concerned with gathering, manipulating, storing, retrieving, and classifying recorded information
    cognitive science
    the field of science concerned with cognition; includes parts of cognitive psychology and linguistics and computer science and cognitive neuroscience and philosophy of mind
    social science
    the branch of science that studies society and the relationships of individual within a society
    the science or art of strategy
    the science of systematic classification
    the branch of science that studies death (especially its social and psychological aspects)
    revival of a classical style (in art or literature or architecture or music) but from a new perspective or with a new motivation
    classicalism, classicism
    a movement in literature and art during the 17th and 18th centuries in Europe that favored rationality and restraint and strict forms
    Romantic Movement, Romanticism
    a movement in literature and art during the late 18th and early 19th centuries that celebrated nature rather than civilization
    the discipline that studies the English language and literature
    the discipline that records and interprets past events involving human beings
    art history
    the academic discipline that studies the development of painting and sculpture
    the determination of the actual temporal sequence of past events
    beaux arts, fine arts
    the study and creation of visual works of art
    performing arts
    arts or skills that require public performance
    the scholarly knowledge of western cultures and languages and people
    Oriental Studies, Orientalism
    the scholarly knowledge of Asian cultures and languages and people
    the rational investigation of questions about existence and knowledge and ethics
    literary study
    the humanistic study of literature
    library science
    the study of the principles and practices of library administration
    linguistics, philology
    the humanistic study of language and literature
    the scholarly and scientific study of music
    the study of Chinese history and language and culture
    stemmatics, stemmatology
    the humanistic discipline that attempts to reconstruct the transmission of a text (especially a text in manuscript form) on the basis of relations between the various surviving manuscripts (sometimes using cladistic analysis)
    (Middle Ages) an introductory curriculum at a medieval university involving grammar and logic and rhetoric; considered to be a triple way to eloquence
    (Middle Ages) a higher division of the curriculum in a medieval university involving arithmetic and music and geometry and astronomy
    cryptanalysis, cryptanalytics, cryptography, cryptology
    the science of analyzing and deciphering codes and ciphers and cryptograms
    the scientific study of language
    the branch of theology that is concerned with angels
    the branch of theology that is concerned with the defense of Christian doctrines
    the branch of theology concerned with the nature and the constitution and the functions of a church
    the branch of theology that is concerned with such final things as death and Last Judgment; Heaven and Hell; the ultimate destiny of humankind
    the branch of theology that deals with principles of exegesis
    the branch of theology that deals with sermons and homilies
    liturgics, liturgiology
    the study of liturgies
    the branch of theology that defends God's goodness and justice in the face of the existence of evil
    the branch of military science dealing with detailed maneuvers to achieve objectives set by strategy
    the branch of military science dealing with military command and the planning and conduct of a war
    the branch of science related to space flight and aviation
    type of:
    domain, knowledge base, knowledge domain
    the content of a particular field of knowledge
  3. noun
    the subject matter of a conversation or discussion
    “he didn't want to discuss that subject
    synonyms: theme, topic
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    bone of contention
    the subject of a dispute
    a subject mentioned earlier (preceding in time)
    head, question
    the subject matter at issue
    the principal theme in a speech or literary work
    a question raised for consideration or solution
    matter of fact, question of fact
    a disputed factual contention that is generally left for a jury to decide
    matter of law, question of law
    a disputed legal contention that is generally left for a judge to decide
    type of:
    content, message, subject matter, substance
    what a communication that is about something is about
  4. noun
    something (a person or object or scene) selected by an artist or photographer for graphic representation
    “a moving picture of a train is more dramatic than a still picture of the same subject
    synonyms: content, depicted object
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    type of:
    a separate and self-contained entity
  5. noun
    a person who is subjected to experimental or other observational procedures; someone who is an object of investigation
    “the subjects for this investigation were selected randomly”
    synonyms: case, guinea pig
  6. verb
    cause to experience or suffer or make liable or vulnerable to
    “He subjected me to his awful poetry”
    “The sergeant subjected the new recruits to many drills”
    “People in Chernobyl were subjected to radiation”
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    bacterise, bacterize
    subject to the action of bacteria
    expose to the effects of vitriol or injure with vitriol
    cause (someone) to undergo something
    cause to experience shipwreck
    subject to refraction
    expose or make accessible to some action or influence
    expose to light, of photographic film
    make oneself subject to; bring upon oneself; become liable to
    expose to the circulation of fresh air so as to retard spoilage
    insolate, solarise, solarize, sun
    expose to the rays of the sun or affect by exposure to the sun
    aerate, air, air out
    expose to fresh air
    expose excessively
    expose insufficiently
    expose to too much light
    expose to too little light
    be affected by; be subjected to
    type of:
    affect, bear on, bear upon, impact, touch, touch on
    have an effect upon
  7. verb
    make accountable for
    “He did not want to subject himself to the judgments of his superiors”
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    type of:
    yield to the control of another
  8. verb
    refer for judgment or consideration
    synonyms: submit
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    submit for consideration, judgment, or use
    submit (a report, etc.) to someone in authority
    pass on, relegate, submit
    refer to another person for decision or judgment
    report out
    return a bill after consideration and revision to a legislative body
    type of:
    send or direct for treatment, information, or a decision
  9. noun
    (grammar) one of the two main constituents of a sentence; the grammatical constituent about which something is predicated
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    type of:
    constituent, grammatical constituent
    (grammar) a word or phrase or clause forming part of a larger grammatical construction
  10. noun
    (logic) the first term of a proposition
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    type of:
    one of the substantive phrases in a logical proposition
  11. noun
    a person who owes allegiance to that nation
    “a monarch has a duty to his subjects
    synonyms: national
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    a native or naturalized member of a state or other political community
    a person from your own country
    nationalist, patriot
    one who loves and defends his or her country
    active citizen
    a citizen who takes an active role in the community (as in crime prevention and neighborhood watch)
    chauvinist, flag-waver, hundred-percenter, jingo, jingoist, patrioteer
    an extreme bellicose nationalist
    a nonmilitary citizen
    a man from your own country
    a woman from your own country
    freeman, freewoman
    a person who is not a serf or a slave
    private citizen
    a citizen who does not hold any official or public position
    a person who has returned to the country of origin or whose citizenship has been restored
    a man ranking above an ordinary freeman and below a noble in Anglo-Saxon England (especially one who gave military service in exchange for land)
    elector, voter
    a citizen who has a legal right to vote
    type of:
    individual, mortal, person, somebody, someone, soul
    a human being
  12. adjective
    being under the power or sovereignty of another or others
    subject peoples”
    synonyms: dependent
    subject or submissive to authority or the control of another
  13. verb
    make subservient; force to submit or subdue
    synonyms: subjugate
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    subjugate by imposing troops
    make a slave of; bring into servitude
    type of:
    dominate, master
    have dominance or the power to defeat over
  14. adjective
    possibly accepting or permitting
    “the time is fixed by the director and players and therefore subject to much variation”
    synonyms: capable, open
    (often followed by `of' or `to') yielding readily to or capable of
  15. adjective
    likely to be affected by something
    “the bond is subject to taxation”
    “he is subject to fits of depression”
    acted upon; influenced
Word Family

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