What does relative mean?

Definitions for relativeˈrɛl ə tɪv

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word relative.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. relative, relation(noun)

    a person related by blood or marriage

    "police are searching for relatives of the deceased"; "he has distant relations back in New Jersey"

  2. relative, congener, congenator, congeneric(adj)

    an animal or plant that bears a relationship to another (as related by common descent or by membership in the same genus)

  3. relative, comparative(adj)

    estimated by comparison; not absolute or complete

    "a relative stranger"

  4. proportional, relative(adj)

    properly related in size or degree or other measurable characteristics; usually followed by `to'

    "the punishment ought to be proportional to the crime"; "earnings relative to production"


  1. relative(Noun)

    Someone in the same family; someone connected by blood, marriage, or adoption.

  2. relative(Adjective)

    Relevant; pertinent

  3. relative(Adjective)

    Connected to or depending on something else; not absolute; comparative.

  4. relative(Adjective)

    That relates to an antecedent

  5. relative(Adjective)

    Having the same key but differing in being major or minor

  6. Origin: From relativus, from relatus, perfect passive participle of refero, from re- + fero

Webster Dictionary

  1. Relative(adj)

    having relation or reference; referring; respecting; standing in connection; pertaining; as, arguments not relative to the subject

  2. Relative(adj)

    arising from relation; resulting from connection with, or reference to, something else; not absolute

  3. Relative(adj)

    indicating or expressing relation; refering to an antecedent; as, a relative pronoun

  4. Relative(adj)

    characterizing or pertaining to chords and keys, which, by reason of the identify of some of their tones, admit of a natural transition from one to the other

  5. Relative(noun)

    one who, or that which, relates to, or is considered in its relation to, something else; a relative object or term; one of two object or term; one of two objects directly connected by any relation

  6. Relative(noun)

    a person connected by blood or affinity; strictly, one allied by blood; a relation; a kinsman or kinswoman

  7. Relative(noun)

    a relative pronoun; a word which relates to, or represents, another word or phrase, called its antecedent; as, the relatives "who", "which", "that"

  8. Origin: [F. relatif, L. relativus. See Relate.]

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Relative

    rel′a-tiv, adj. having relation: respecting: not absolute or existing by itself: considered as belonging to something else: (gram.) expressing relation.—n. that which has relation to something else: a relation: (gram.) a pronoun which relates to something before, called its antecedent.—adj. Relatī′val (or Rel′atival).—adv. Rel′atively.—ns. Rel′ativeness, Relativ′ity.—Relativity of human knowledge, the doctrine that the nature and extent of our knowledge is determined not merely by the qualities of the objects known, but necessarily by the conditions of our cognitive powers.

The Standard Electrical Dictionary

  1. Relative

    Indicating the relation between two or more things without reference to absolute value of any one of them. Thus one lamp may be of relatively double resistance compared to another, but this states nothing of the resistance in ohms of either lamp.

Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms

  1. relative

    The bearing of a target measured in the horizontal from the bow of one

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'relative' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #2553

  2. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'relative' in Nouns Frequency: #1223

  3. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'relative' in Adjectives Frequency: #342


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of relative in Chaldean Numerology is: 9

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of relative in Pythagorean Numerology is: 2

Sample Sentences & Example Usage

  1. Neha Shresha:

    I'll probably call a relative.

  2. William Ralph Inge:

    The wise man is he who knows the relative value of things.

  3. Matshona Dhliwayo:

    Help from a stranger is better than sympathy from a relative.

  4. Vikrant Parsai:

    Marry a relative! If it goes wrong, it is at least in the family.

  5. Dave Sargent:

    GM has improved relative to the industry average for seven straight years.

Images & Illustrations of relative

  1. relativerelativerelative

Translations for relative

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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