What does superlative mean?

Definitions for superlative
səˈpɜr lə tɪv, sʊ-su·perla·tive

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

Princeton's WordNet

  1. superlativenoun

    an exaggerated expression (usually of praise)

    "the critics lavished superlatives on it"

  2. acme, height, elevation, peak, pinnacle, summit, superlative, meridian, tiptop, topnoun

    the highest level or degree attainable; the highest stage of development

    "his landscapes were deemed the acme of beauty"; "the artist's gifts are at their acme"; "at the height of her career"; "the peak of perfection"; "summer was at its peak"; "...catapulted Einstein to the pinnacle of fame"; "the summit of his ambition"; "so many highest superlatives achieved by man"; "at the top of his profession"

  3. superlative, superlative degreeadjective

    the superlative form of an adjective or adverb

    "`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'"

  4. greatest, sterling(a), superlativeadjective

    highest in quality


  1. superlativenoun

    The highest extent or degree of something.

  2. superlativenoun

    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. superlativenoun

    An adjective used to praise something exceptional.

    Lincoln is amazing, wonderful, fantastic, and many other superlatives I can't think of right now!

  4. superlativeadjective

    Exceptionally good; of the highest quality; superb.

  5. superlativeadjective

    Of or relating to a superlative.

  6. Etymology: From superlatyf, from superlatif, from superlativus, from superlatus, past participle of superfero, from super + fero.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. SUPERLATIVEadjective

    Etymology: superlatif, Fr. superlativus, Latin.

    It is an usual way to give the superlative unto things of eminence; and when a thing is very great, presently to define it to be the greatest of all. Thomas Browne, Vulgar Errours.

    Some have a violent and turgid manner of talking and thinking; they are always in extremes, and pronounce concerning every thing in the superlative. Isaac Watts.

    The high court of parliament in England is superlative. Francis Bacon, Advice to Villiers.

    Martyrdoms I reckon amongst miracles; because they seem to exceed the strength of human nature; and I may do the like of superlative and admirable holiness. Francis Bacon.

    The generality of its reception is with many the persuading argument of its superlative desert; and common judges measure excellency by numbers. Joseph Glanvill.

    Ingratitude and compassion never cohabit in the same breast; which shews the superlative malignity of this vice, and the baseness of the mind in which it dwells. Robert South, Sermons.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Superlativeadjective

    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. Superlativeadjective

    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

  3. Superlativenoun

    that which is highest or most eminent; the utmost degree

  4. Superlativenoun

    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

  5. Etymology: [L. superlativus, fr. superlatus excessive, used as p. p. of superiorferre, but from a different root: cf. F. superlatif. See Elate, Tolerate.]


  1. Superlative

    In grammar, the superlative is the form of an adverb or adjective that expresses a degree of the adverb or adjective being used that is greater than any other possible degree of the given descriptor. English superlatives are typically formed with the suffix -est or the word most.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Superlative

    sū-pėr′la-tiv, adj. raised above others or to the highest degree: superior to all others: most eminent: (gram.) expressing the highest degree of a quality.—n. (gram.) the superlative or highest degree of adjectives and adverbs: any word or phrase full of exaggeration.—adv. Super′latively.—n. Super′lativeness, state of being superlative or in the highest degree. [L. superlativussuperlatus, pa.p. of superferresuper, above, ferre, to carry.]

Matched Categories

How to pronounce superlative?

How to say superlative in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of superlative in Chaldean Numerology is: 8

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of superlative in Pythagorean Numerology is: 4

Examples of superlative in a Sentence

  1. Fox News:

    I really did n’t expect it, but I ’m absolutely thrilled – because I sort of started as a recurring character and we all collaborated into it being this wonderful, specific role that I ’m delighted to playm the whole ‘ Succession ’ cast is SUPERLATIVE and I ’m thrilled that so many of us have been acknowledged. This is just a fantastic thrill ! This show is absolutely a one-of-a-kind experience – Jesse is a raving genius and seems to have hired all the right people !

  2. Adam Sandler:

    A few weeks back when I was quote, unquote, snubbed by the academy, it reminded me when I briefly attended high school and was overlooked for the coveted yearbook superlative category best looking.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for superlative

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

Get even more translations for superlative »


Find a translation for the superlative definition in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Português (Portuguese)
  • Deutsch (German)
  • العربية (Arabic)
  • Français (French)
  • Русский (Russian)
  • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • 한국어 (Korean)
  • עברית (Hebrew)
  • Gaeilge (Irish)
  • Українська (Ukrainian)
  • اردو (Urdu)
  • Magyar (Hungarian)
  • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italiano (Italian)
  • தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Türkçe (Turkish)
  • తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Čeština (Czech)
  • Polski (Polish)
  • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Românește (Romanian)
  • Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latinum (Latin)
  • Svenska (Swedish)
  • Dansk (Danish)
  • Suomi (Finnish)
  • فارسی (Persian)
  • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English (English)

Word of the Day

Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

Please enter your email address:

Discuss these superlative definitions with the community:



    Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


    "superlative." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 31 Jan. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/superlative>.

    Are we missing a good definition for superlative? Don't keep it to yourself...

    Image or illustration of


    Credit »

    Browse Definitions.net

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Chrome

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Firefox

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!


    Are you a words master?

    add details, as to an account or idea
    • A. excogitate
    • B. huff
    • C. caddie
    • D. lucubrate

    Nearby & related entries:

    Alternative searches for superlative: