greatest vs superlative what difference

what is difference between greatest and superlative

English

Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /ˈɡɹeɪtɛst/
  • Hyphenation: great‧est
  • Rhymes: -ɛst

Adjective

greatest

  1. superlative form of great: most great
    • c. 1610-11, William Shakespeare, The Tempest, Act III scene ii[1]:
      Caliban: [] I never saw a woman / But only Sycorax, my dam, and she; / But she as far surpasseth Sycorax / As great’st does least.

Related terms

  • great
  • greater


English

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

  • (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /suːˈpɜː.lə.tɪv/, /sjuːˈpɜː.lə.tɪv/
  • (US) IPA(key): /suˈpɝː.lə.tɪv/

Noun

superlative (plural superlatives)

  1. The extreme (e.g. highest, lowest, deepest, farthest, deepest, etc) extent or degree of something.
    Synonyms: acme, apex, height, zenith
  2. (grammar) The form of an adjective that expresses which of several 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.
  3. (informal) An adjective used to praise something exceptional.
    • 2019, Daniel Taylor, Lionel Messi magic puts Barcelona in command of semi-final with Liverpool (in The Guardian, 1 May 2019)[1]
      Sometimes it feels like there are no more superlatives left. Seriously, what else can be said about this little guy with the No 10 shirt and magic in his feet other than to ask, perhaps, whether there is anyone who wants to persist with the argument that Pelé, or Diego Maradona, or any of the others, have ever played this sport any better?

Synonyms

  • (highest degree): acme, peak

Hyponyms

  • absolute superlative
  • relative superlative

Related terms

  • superlative degree

Translations

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

  • (exceptionally good): above and beyond, exceptional, extraordinary, superb

Translations

See also

  • absolute
  • comparative
  • elative

French

Adjective

superlative

  1. feminine singular of superlatif

Italian

Adjective

superlative

  1. feminine plural of superlativo

Latin

Adjective

superlātīve

  1. vocative masculine singular of superlātīvus

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