absolute

adjective
ab·​so·​lute | \ ˈab-sə-ˌlüt How to pronounce absolute (audio) , ˌab-sə-ˈ How to pronounce absolute (audio) \

Definition of absolute

1a : free from imperfection : perfect … it is a most absolute and excellent horse.— William Shakespeare
b : free or relatively free from mixture : pure absolute alcohol
c : outright, unmitigated an absolute lie
2 : being, governed by, or characteristic of a ruler or authority completely free from constitutional or other restraint absolute power
3 : having no restriction, exception, or qualification an absolute requirement absolute freedom
4 : positive, unquestionable absolute proof
5a : independent of arbitrary standards of measurement
b : relating to or derived in the simplest manner from the fundamental units of length, mass, and time absolute electric units
c : relating to, measured on, or being a temperature scale based on absolute zero absolute temperature specifically : kelvin 10° absolute
6 : fundamental, ultimate absolute knowledge
7 : perfectly embodying the nature of a thing absolute justice

8 grammar

a : standing apart from a normal or usual syntactical relation with other words or sentence elements the absolute construction this being the case in the sentence "this being the case, let us go"
b of an adjective or possessive pronoun : standing alone without a modified substantive Blind in "help the blind" and ours in "your work and ours" are absolute.
c of a verb : having no object in the particular construction under consideration though normally transitive Kill in "if looks could kill" is an absolute verb.
9 : being self-sufficient and free of external references or relationships an absolute term in logic absolute music
10 : being the true distance from an aircraft to the earth's surface absolute altitude

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Other Words from absolute

absolute noun
absoluteness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for absolute

Synonyms

arbitrary, autocratic (also autocratical), czarist (also tsarist), despotic, dictatorial, monocratic, tyrannical (also tyrannic), tyrannous

Antonyms

limited

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Examples of absolute in a Sentence

You can't predict the future with absolute certainty. I have absolute faith in her ability to get the job done. He swore an oath of absolute secrecy. When it comes to using computers, I'm an absolute beginner. The country is ruled by an absolute dictator. The country is an absolute monarchy.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Still, the branding of it all is an absolute nightmare, and is an additional headache computer and smartphone buyers don't need. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "USB 3.2's horrible new branding scheme may create confusion for PC buyers," 26 Feb. 2019 Everyone who could possibly be in charge of this decision at this point in time is motivated by hate and absolute absorption or power, and would use the Internet-Free Weekend (IFW) to their nefarious advantage. Kelly Conaboy, The Cut, "There Should Be No Internet for One Weekend Per Month," 29 June 2018 All dictators are insecure, and absolute dictators are absolutely more insecure than the rest. Anne Applebaum, star-telegram, "A 'fantastic meeting' for Trump and Kim," 12 June 2018 But one activity in particular is my absolute favorite: shopping. Tiffany Dodson, SELF, "The Best Presidents’ Day 2019 Sales," 14 Feb. 2019 Sunday night's Grammy Awards featured some of our absolute favorite faces in the music industry (hi, Dolly Parton and Kacey Musgraves!). Jennifer Aldrich, Country Living, "Kelly Clarkson Skipped the Grammy Awards and Everyone's Wondering Why," 11 Feb. 2019 Aside from aesthetically being an absolute dream, Kudadoo values sustainability, too. Maya Mcdowell, House Beautiful, "This Island in the Maldives Has Villas Overlooking the Water, and We Want to Go Right Now," 5 Feb. 2019 What the media tells you about who these people are is of absolute importance. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Full Q&A: ‘Dear America’ author Jose Antonio Vargas on Recode Decode," 24 Nov. 2018 My absolute favorite Saturday night activity is a show at Humphrey’s Concerts by the Bay. Lisa Deaderick, sandiegouniontribune.com, "'Miracle' baseball league for kids with special needs hits a homerun," 1 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'absolute.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of absolute

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for absolute

Middle English absolut, borrowed from Latin absolūtus, from past participle of absolvere "to set free, acquit, finish, complete" — more at absolve

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Statistics for absolute

Last Updated

8 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for absolute

The first known use of absolute was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for absolute

absolute

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of absolute

: complete and total
: not limited in any way
: having unlimited power

absolute

adjective
ab·​so·​lute | \ ˈab-sə-ˌlüt How to pronounce absolute (audio) \

Kids Definition of absolute

1 : total entry 1 sense 1, complete absolute darkness
2 : not limited in any way absolute power
3 : free from doubt : certain absolute proof

Other Words from absolute

absolutely adverb absolutely certain

absolute

adjective
ab·​so·​lute | \ ˌab-sə-ˈlüt How to pronounce absolute (audio) \

Medical Definition of absolute

1 : pure or relatively free from mixture absolute methanol
2 : relating to, measured on, or being a temperature scale based on absolute zero absolute temperature

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absolute

adjective
ab·​so·​lute

Legal Definition of absolute

1a : free from qualification, condition, exception, or restriction rights that even seem absolute have these qualificationsLong v. Rockwood, 277 U.S. 142 (1928) — see also absolute ownership at ownership — compare qualified
b in the civil law of Louisiana : having or allowing no legal effect an absolute impediment
2 : final and not liable to modification sometimes used after the word it modifies divorce absolute — compare nisi

Other Words from absolute

absolutely adverb

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Comments on absolute

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