comparative

adjective
com·​par·​a·​tive | \ kəm-ˈper-ə-tiv How to pronounce comparative (audio) , -ˈpa-rə-\

Definition of comparative

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, or constituting the degree of comparison in a language that denotes increase in the quality, quantity, or relation expressed by an adjective or adverb The comparative form of happy is happier. The comparative form of clearly is more clearly.
2 : considered as if in comparison to something else as a standard not quite attained : relative a comparative stranger She's a comparative newcomer to the company.
3 : characterized by systematic comparison especially of likenesses and dissimilarities comparative anatomy a comparative analysis of the roles of women in different cultures

comparative

noun

Definition of comparative (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : one that compares with another especially on equal footing : rival
b : one that makes witty or mocking comparisons
2 : the comparative degree or form in a language The comparative of tall is taller.

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Other Words from comparative

Adjective

comparatively adverb
comparativeness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for comparative

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of comparative in a Sentence

Adjective She did a comparative study of classical and modern art. I'm taking a class in comparative anatomy. a comparative analysis of the roles of women in different cultures The comparative form of “happy” is “happier”; the comparative form of “good” is “better”; the comparative form of “clearly” is “more clearly.” Noun “Taller” is the comparative of “tall.”
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Busing is not a stable solution; comparative affluence needs to be taken out of the equation for resolving disparity. baltimoresun.com, "Letters: Busing isn’t the answer to Howard schools’ disparity problem; and more from readers," 17 Sep. 2019 The Frenchman, a comparative veteran at 25 and with a World Cup winner's medal to his name, found himself on the bench for the opening three La Liga fixtures as Gerard Pique and Clement Lenglet were preferred. SI.com, "Report: Barcelona to Sell Samuel Umtiti in January With Juventus a Possible Destination," 15 Sep. 2019 Kerouac saw sadness in Frank’s collection, but what is most notable about the staid, unburnished faces now is their comparative sanguinity. Jelani Cobb, The New Yorker, "How Robert Frank’s Photographs Helped Define America," 11 Sep. 2019 There are pockets of comparative underdevelopment on all of the Hawaiian islands, but only Molokai is marked by a long-term, persistent failure to develop in step with its neighbors. Wade Graham, Smithsonian, "Why Molokai, With All Its Wonders, Is the Least Developed of Hawai’i’s Islands," 31 Aug. 2019 The watchdog said TransferWise had manipulated the data to its own advantage and hadn’t made enough comparative informative available to clients for them to make a judgement. John Detrixhe, Quartz, "Is PayPal’s Xoom money transfer service a good deal?," 6 Aug. 2019 To combat some of the comparative invisibility of East African, and especially Kenyan, music, Awino and other industry insiders have recently undertaken a host of different initiatives. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, "What’s Missing From Beyoncé’s Lion King Soundtrack," 19 July 2019 Just as there are weather advantages that suggest what crops are best produced in different places, countries also have comparative advantages. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Econometer: Should the U.S. cut ties with China?," 30 Aug. 2019 Givler was studying at Occidental College for a graduate degree in comparative literature. Calvin Tomkins, The New Yorker, "Vija Celmins’s Surface Matters," 26 Aug. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Why this matters: Reports from an independent testing organization like AV-Comparatives are important for the average PC user. Ian Paul, PCWorld, "AV-Comparatives' anti-phishing results for 2017 put Avast, Bitdefender, Fortinet, and Kaspersky on top," 1 Aug. 2017 Other poll comparatives from March fell like dominoes. David Paleologos, USA TODAY, "Paleologos on the poll: Replacing Obamacare is a sensitive 'Operation'," 29 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'comparative.' 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 comparative

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for comparative

Adjective

see compare entry 1

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Statistics for comparative

Last Updated

29 Sep 2019

Time Traveler for comparative

The first known use of comparative was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for comparative

comparative

adjective
How to pronounce comparative (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of comparative

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: seeming to be something when compared with others
: involving the act of looking at the ways that things are alike or different
grammar : of or relating to the form of an adjective or adverb that is used to indicate more of a particular quality

comparative

noun

English Language Learners Definition of comparative (Entry 2 of 2)

: the comparative form of an adjective or adverb : the form of an adjective or adverb that is used to indicate more of a particular quality

comparative

adjective
com·​par·​a·​tive | \ kəm-ˈper-ə-tiv How to pronounce comparative (audio) \

Kids Definition of comparative

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : not entirely but more so than others : relative We live in comparative freedom.
2 : of or relating to the form of an adjective or adverb that shows an increase in the quality that the adjective or adverb expresses “Taller” is the comparative form of “tall.”

Other Words from comparative

comparatively adverb It was a comparatively easy hike.

comparative

noun

Kids Definition of comparative (Entry 2 of 2)

: the degree or form in a language that indicates an increase in the quality expressed by an adjective or adverb “Taller” is the comparative of “tall.”

comparative

adjective
com·​par·​a·​tive | \ kəm-ˈpar-ət-iv How to pronounce comparative (audio) \

Medical Definition of comparative

: characterized by the systematic comparison of phenomena and especially of likenesses and dissimilarities comparative anatomy the study of blood types by comparative analysis

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comparative

adjective
com·​par·​a·​tive | \ kəm-ˈpar-ə-tiv How to pronounce comparative (audio) \

Legal Definition of comparative

: characterized by systematic comparison comparative contribution, which apportions according to…respective fault— W. L. Prosser and W. P. Keeton

Other Words from comparative

comparatively adverb

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Comments on comparative

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