Definition of absolute
1a : free from imperfection : perfect … it is a most absolute and excellent horse. — William Shakespeareb : free or relatively free from mixture : pure absolute alcoholc : 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
5a : independent of arbitrary standards of measurementb : relating to or derived in the simplest manner from the fundamental units of length, mass, and time absolute electric unitsc : relating to, measured on, or being a temperature scale based on absolute zero absolute temperature; specifically : kelvin 10° absolute
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.
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.
Recent Examples of absolute from the Web
Uber has bled money for years in an attempt to become the absolute ruler of its industry.
Next came cherries for cheek stain, which makes absolute sense and is a bit of a palette cleanser from the fish debacle.
Unlike other county Republican organizations, the Nassau GOP has a rigid, top-down organizational structure with absolute power vested in its chairman, who for the past 34 years has been Joe Mondello.
The absolute most minor details of which were revealed in a one-page, double-spaced, bullet point outline in April?
The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey (Philadelphia Theatre Company, May 17-June 4).
The rain came and went in squalls, and the ever-changing track conditions made worrying about absolute pace seem meaningless.
The cabins and campground offer many waterfront vistas, and the absolute best campsites are set aside exclusively for tents along the most beautiful beach in the Florida Keys, Sandspur Beach.
That's why Huebner requested the absolute maximum sentences for not only the two homicides and attempted homicides, but four other counts ranging from kidnapping to armed robbery to having a gun as a felon.
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.
ABSOLUTE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of absolute for English Language Learners
: complete and total
: not limited in any way
: having unlimited power
ABSOLUTE Defined for Kids
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
Legal Definition of absolute
1a : free from qualification, condition, exception, or restriction rights that even seem absolute have these qualifications — Long 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
Learn More about absolute
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up absolute? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).