Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

superlative

play
adjective su·per·la·tive \su̇-ˈpər-lə-tiv\

Simple Definition of superlative

  • grammar : of or relating to the form of an adjective or adverb that is used to indicate the greatest degree of a particular quality

  • : of very high quality

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of superlative

  1. 1 :  of, relating to, or constituting the degree of grammatical comparison that denotes an extreme or unsurpassed level or extent

  2. 2a :  surpassing all others :  supremeb :  of very high quality :  excellent <superlative work>

  3. 3 :  excessive, exaggerated

superlatively

adverb

superlativeness

noun

Examples of superlative in a sentence

  1. The superlative form of nice is nicest; the superlative form of bad is worst; the superlative form of interesting is most interesting.

  2. <the New England town meeting is a superlative example of grassroots democracy>



Origin and Etymology of superlative

Middle English superlatif, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin superlativus, from Latin superlatus (past participle of superferre to carry over, raise high), from super- + latus, past participle of ferre to carry — more at tolerate, bear


First Known Use: 14th century

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms


2

superlative

noun su·per·la·tive

Simple Definition of superlative

  • grammar : the form of an adjective or adverb that is used to indicate the greatest degree of a particular quality : the superlative form of an adjective or adverb

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of superlative

  1. 1a :  the superlative degree of comparison in a languageb :  a superlative form of an adjective or adverb

  2. 2 :  the superlative or utmost degree of something :  acme

  3. 3 :  a superlative person or thing

  4. 4 :  an admiring sometimes exaggerated expression especially of praise

Examples of superlative in a sentence

  1. Simplest is the superlative of simple.



15th Century

First Known Use of superlative

15th century

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms


SUPERLATIVE Defined for Kids

1

superlative

play
adjective su·per·la·tive \su̇-ˈpər-lə-tiv\

Definition of superlative for Students

  1. 1 :  being the form of an adjective or adverb that shows the greatest degree of comparison <“Best” is the superlative form of “good.”>

  2. 2 :  better than all others :  supreme <superlative work>




2

superlative

play
noun su·per·la·tive

Definition of superlative for Students

  1. :  the superlative degree or a superlative form in a language





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up superlative? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a representation of something

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

confounded-person

Which is a synonym of indolent?

melancholy philistine frenetic lazy
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ