Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of extreme
Meaning of extreme by Wiktionary Dictionary



    Latin extremus, the superlative of exterus


    • IPA: /ɪkˈstɹiːm/, X-SAMPA: /Ik"stri:m/


    extreme ( comparative extremer or more extreme, superlative extremest or most extreme )

    1. Of a place, the most remote, farthest or outermost .
      At the extreme edges, the coating is very thin .
    2. In the greatest or highest degree; intense .
      He has an extreme aversion to needles, and avoids visiting the doctor .
    3. Excessive, or far beyond the norm .
      His extreme love of model trains showed in the rails that criscrossed his entire home .
    4. Drastic, or of great severity .
      I think the new laws are extreme, but many believe them necessary for national security .
    5. Of sports, difficult or dangerous; performed in a hazardous environment .
      Television has begun to reflect the growing popularity of extreme sports such as bungee jumping and skateboarding .
    6. ( archaic ) Ultimate, final or last .



    Derived terms


    extreme ( plural: extremes )

    1. The greatest or utmost point, degree or condition
    2. Each of the things at opposite ends of a range or scale .
      extremes of temperature
    3. A drastic expedient .
    4. ( mathematics ) Either of the two numbers at the ends of a proportion, as 1 and 6 in 1:2=3:6 .


    extreme ( comparative more extreme, superlative most extreme )

    1. ( archaic ) Extremely.

    Usage notes

    Related terms

    See also

    See also

    • Oxford English Dictionary, Second Edition, 1989

Explanation of extreme by Wordnet Dictionary


    1. most distant in any direction

    2. the extreme edge of town
    3. of the greatest possible degree or extent or intensity

    4. extreme cold
      extreme caution
      extreme pleasure
    5. far beyond a norm in quantity or amount or degree

    6. an extreme example
      extreme temperatures
      extreme danger
    7. beyond a norm in views or actions

    8. an extreme conservative
      an extreme liberal
      extreme views on integration
      extreme opinions
    1. the furthest or highest degree of something

    2. he carried it to extremes
    3. the point located farthest from the middle of something

    Definition of extreme by GCIDE Dictionary


    1. Extreme a. [L. extremus, superl. of exter, extrus, on the outside, outward: cf. F. extrême. See Exterior.]
      1. At the utmost point, edge, or border; outermost; utmost; farthest; most remote; at the widest limit.

      2. Last; final; conclusive; -- said of time; as, “the extreme hour of life”.

      3. The best of worst; most urgent; greatest; highest; immoderate; excessive; most violent; as, “an extreme case; extreme folly.” “The extremest remedy.” Dryden. “Extreme rapidity.” Sir W. Scott.

      Yet extreme gusts will blow out fire. Shak.

      4. Radical; ultra; as, “extreme opinions”.

      The Puritans or extreme Protestants. Gladstone.

      5. ( Mus. ) Extended or contracted as much as possible; -- said of intervals; as, “an extreme sharp second; an extreme flat forth.”

      Extreme and mean ratio ( Geom. ), the relation of a line and its segments when the line is so divided that the whole is to the greater segment is to the less. -- Extreme distance. ( Paint. ) See Distance., n., 6. -- Extreme unction. See under Unction.

      ☞ Although this adjective, being superlative in signification, is not properly subject to comparison, the superlative form not unfrequently occurs, especially in the older writers. “Tried in his extremest state.” Spenser. “Extremest hardships.” Sharp. “Extremest of evils.” Bacon. “Extremest verge of the swift brook.” Shak. “The sea's extremest borders.” Addison.

    2. Extreme, n.
      1. The utmost point or verge; that part which terminates a body; extremity.

      2. Utmost limit or degree that is supposable or tolerable; hence, furthest degree; any undue departure from the mean; -- often in the plural: things at an extreme distance from each other, the most widely different states, etc.; as, “extremes of heat and cold, of virtue and vice; extremes meet.”

      His parsimony went to the extreme of meanness. Bancroft.

      3. An extreme state or condition; hence, calamity, danger, distress, etc. “Resolute in most extremes.” Shak.

      4. ( Logic ) Either of the extreme terms of a syllogism, the middle term being interposed between them.

      5. ( Math. ) The first or the last term of a proportion or series.

      In the extreme as much as possible. “The position of the Port was difficult in the extreme.” J. P. Peters.