1

better

adjective bet·ter \ ˈbe-tər \
Updated on: 20 Nov 2017

Definition of better

1 :greater than half
  • for the better part of an hour
2 :improved in health or mental attitude
  • feeling better
3 :more attractive, favorable, or commendable
  • in better circumstances
4 :more advantageous or effective
  • a better solution
5 :improved in accuracy or performance
  • building a better engine
  • comparative of good

Examples of better in a Sentence

  1. Her second book is better than her first one.

  2. This one is no better than that one.

  3. She's a better golfer than I am.

  4. He's a better singer than he is an actor.

  5. He's much better with children now that he's a father himself.

  6. The weather is better today than it was yesterday.

  7. They came up with a better solution to the problem.

  8. Don't you have something better to do than to watch TV all day?

  9. Her work wasn't that good at first, but it's getting better.

  10. Her work just keeps getting better and better.

Recent Examples of better from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of better

Middle English bettre, from Old English betera; akin to Old English bōt remedy, Sanskrit bhadra fortunate


2

better

verb

Definition of better

transitive verb
1 :to make better (see 1better): such as
a :to make more tolerable or acceptable
  • trying to better the lot of slum dwellers
b :to make more complete or perfect
  • looked forward to bettering her acquaintance with the new neighbors
2 :to surpass in excellence :excel
  • bettered his personal record by nearly three seconds
intransitive verb
:to become better
  • … must be bettering instead of worsening.
  • —Thomas Carlyle

Examples of better in a Sentence

  1. They are trying to better the lives of working people.

  2. He looked forward to bettering his acquaintance with the new neighbors.

  3. The team has bettered its chances of winning the championship.

  4. She bettered her previous performance.

  5. He set a record that has never been equaled or bettered.

Recent Examples of better from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of better

Synonym Discussion of better

improve, better, help, ameliorate mean to make more acceptable or to bring nearer a standard. improve and better are general and interchangeable and apply to what can be made better whether it is good or bad.
    • measures to further improve the quality of medical care
    • immigrants hoping to better their lot
help implies a bettering that still leaves room for improvement.
    • a coat of paint would help that house
ameliorate implies making more tolerable or acceptable conditions that are hard to endure.
    • tried to ameliorate the lives of people in the tenements

3

better

adverb

Definition of better

1 a :in a more excellent manner
  • sings better than I do
b :to greater advantage :preferably
  • some things are better left unsaid
2 a :to a higher or greater degree
  • he knows the story better than you do
b :more
  • it is better than nine miles to the next town
  • comparative of well

Examples of better in a Sentence

  1. “How is she doing in school?” “She did badly at first, but now she's doing much better.”

  2. She sings better than I do.

  3. He sings better than he acts.

  4. “Instead of writing to her, I'm going to visit her in person.” “Even better.”

  5. He knows the story much better than you do.

  6. Her paintings have become better known in recent years.

  7. There's nothing I'd like better than to see you again.

Recent Examples of better from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of better

better Synonyms

Synonyms
more

4

better

noun

Definition of better

1 a :something better (see 1better)
  • I expected better from them
b :a superior especially in merit or rank
  • was respectful of his betters
2 :advantage, victory
  • get the better of her

Examples of better in a Sentence

  1. They shouldn't treat him that way. He deserves better.

  2. be polite to your betters and to your inferiors in equal measure

Recent Examples of better from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of better

better Synonyms

Synonyms
superior, elder, senior
Antonyms
inferior, subordinate, underling
Related Words
boss, chief, head, leader, master
Near Antonyms
assistant, deputy

5

better

auxiliary verb

Definition of better

:had better (see 3better 1b)
  • you better hurry

Origin and Etymology of better


BETTER Defined for English Language Learners

better

adjective

Definition of better for English Language Learners

  • : higher in quality

  • : more skillful

  • : more attractive, appealing, effective, useful, etc.


better

verb

Definition of better for English Language Learners

  • : to make (something) better

  • : to be or do better than (something or someone) : to improve on (something or someone)


better

adverb

Definition of better for English Language Learners

  • : in a better way

  • —used to suggest that something should or should not be done

  • : to a higher or greater degree


better

noun

Definition of better for English Language Learners

  • : something that is better : better behavior


BETTER Defined for Kids

1

better

adjective bet·ter \ ˈbe-tər \

Definition of better for Students

1 :more satisfactory or skillful than another a better solution a better player
2 :improved in health
  • I was sick but now I'm better.
  • comparative of good
better part
:more than half
  • We waited the better part of an hour.

2

better

verb

Definition of better for Students

bettered; bettering
:to make or become more satisfactory
  • They are trying to better their performance.

3

better

adverb

Definition of better for Students

1 :in a superior or more excellent way
  • He sings better than I do.
2 :to a higher or greater degree
  • She knows the story better than I do.
  • comparative of well

4

better

noun

Definition of better for Students

1 :something that is more satisfactory
  • This is a change for the better.
2 :advantage 2, victory
  • She got the better of her opponent.


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