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

superlative


    Etymology

    From Middle English superlatyf, from Old French superlatif, from Late Latin superlātīvus, from Latin superlātus ( “extravagant, of hyperbole” ), past participle of superfero ( “carry over” ), from super ( “above” ) + fero ( “bear, carry” ) .

    Pronunciation

    • ( RP ) IPA: /suːˈpɜː.lə.tɪv/, /sjuːˈpɜː.lə.tɪv/, SAMPA: /su:"p3:( r ).l@.tIv/
    • ( US ) IPA: /suːˈpɝː.lə.tɪv/, /sjuːˈpɝː.lə.tɪv/

    Noun

    superlative ( plural: superlatives )

    1. The highest extent or degree of something .
    2. ( grammar ) The form of an adjective that expresses which of more than two items has the highest degree of the quality expressed by the adjective; in English, formed by appending "-est" to the end of the adjective ( for some short adjectives only ) or putting "most" before it .
      The superlative of "big" is "biggest"
    3. ( informal ) An adjective used to praise something exceptional .
      Lincoln is amazing, wonderful, fantastic, and many other superlatives I can’t think of right now!

    Synonyms

    Related terms

    Adjective

    superlative ( not comparable )

    1. Exceptionally good; of the highest quality; superb .
    2. ( grammar ) Of or relating to a superlative .

    Usage notes

    Rather formal, reflecting its Latin etymology; more colloquial alternatives include exceptional, fabulous, above and beyond, and others .

    Synonyms

    See also



Explanation of superlative by Wordnet Dictionary

superlative


    Adjective
    1. highest in quality

    Noun
    1. the superlative form of an adjective or adverb

    2. `fastest' is the superlative of the adjective `fast'
      `least famous' is the superlative degree of the adjective `famous'
      `most surely' is the superlative of the adverb `surely'
    3. an exaggerated expression ( usually of praise )

    4. the critics lavished superlatives on it
    5. the highest level or degree attainable

    6. so many highest superlatives achieved by man


    Definition of superlative by GCIDE Dictionary

    superlative


    1. Superlative a. [L. superlativus, fr. superlatus excessive, used as p. p. of superiorferre, but from a different root: cf. F. superlatif. See Elate, Tolerate.]
      1. Lifted up to the highest degree; most eminent; surpassing all other; supreme; as, “superlative wisdom or prudence; a woman of superlative beauty; the superlative glory of the divine character.”

      2. ( Gram. ) Expressing the highest or lowest degree of the quality, manner, etc., denoted by an adjective or an adverb. The superlative degree is formed from the positive by the use of -est, most, or least; as, “highest, most pleasant, least bright”.

      -- Superlatively, adv. -- Superlativeness, n.

    2. Superlative, n.
      1. That which is highest or most eminent; the utmost degree.

      2. ( Gram. ) The superlative degree of adjectives and adverbs; also, a form or word by which the superlative degree is expressed; as, “strongest, wisest, most stormy, least windy, are all superlatives”.

      Absolute superlative, a superlative in an absolute rather than in a comparative or exclusive sense. See Elative.