adjective in·fe·ri·or \in-ˈfir-ē-ər\

: of poor quality : low or lower in quality

: of little or less importance or value

: low or lower in rank

Full Definition of INFERIOR

:  situated lower down :  lower
a :  of low or lower degree or rank
b :  of poor quality :  mediocre
:  of little or less importance, value, or merit <always felt inferior to his older brother>
a :  situated below another and especially another similar superior part of an upright body
b :  situated in a relatively low posterior or ventral position in a quadrupedal body
c (1) :  situated below another plant part or organ
(2) :  abaxial
:  relating to or being a subscript
inferior noun
in·fe·ri·or·i·ty \(ˌ)in-ˌfir-ē-ˈr-ə-tē, -ˈär-\ noun
in·fe·ri·or·ly \in-ˈfir-ē-ər-lē\ adverb

Examples of INFERIOR

  1. These pearls are of inferior quality.
  2. They were considered a socially inferior group.
  3. He always felt inferior around his brother.
  4. The judges voted to overturn a ruling made by an inferior court.
  5. … the pearls were of inferior quality; they looked like pearlized globs of varying wrinkly shapes. —Tracie Rozhon, New York Times, 24 Aug. 2002

Origin of INFERIOR

Middle English, from Latin, comparative of inferus lower — more at under
First Known Use: 15th century

Related to INFERIOR


adjective in·fe·ri·or \in-ˈfir-ē-ər\   (Medical Dictionary)

Medical Definition of INFERIOR

:  situated below and closer to the feet than another and especially another similar part of an upright body especially of a human being—compare superior 1
:  situated in a more posterior or ventral position in the body of a quadruped—compare superior 2


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