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 As a historical and comparative matter, the U.S. allowed such markets for many years and the U.K. still does. Max Raskin, WSJ, "You Can Bet on the Vaccine, Literally," 25 Mar. 2021 All of those awards are legit, but Peterson’s last two seasons have been — and there’s no other way to put it — a comparative disaster. Jeremy Cluff, The Arizona Republic, "Minnesota Vikings' Patrick Peterson has 'a lot left in the tank' after Arizona Cardinals," 23 Mar. 2021 Austin has attracted and will continue to attract young, brilliant talent because of its comparative affordability, outdoor culture and professional development opportunities. Jim Breyer For Cnn Business Perspectives, CNN, "VC Jim Breyer: Silicon Valley still has a bright future. But Austin's time is now," 20 Mar. 2021 By 2022, a primarily BIPOC committee will join the board of directors to assist with play selection; and beginning in 2022, Moxie’s website will display the comparative dollars earned by White vs. BIPOC artists. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Theater’s day of reckoning: San Diego stage companies answer the call for equity, diversity and inclusion," 20 Mar. 2021 Finland's comparative success in curbing COVID-19 may have contributed to the enduring trust the country's people have in their government. David Keyton, Star Tribune, "Happiness Report: World shows resilience in face of COVID19," 19 Mar. 2021 Egypt is revered as the forebear of western civilization while Africa’s neighboring ancient cultures have been dismissed and degraded as primitive — a comparative of western convenience. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, "Lorraine O’Grady outpaced the culture for years. In Brooklyn, it finally catches up," 17 Mar. 2021 Her resistance poems earned her a French Foreign Ministry scholarship to continue her studies in comparative literature, focusing on gender issues. Jackie Abramian, Forbes, "Kurdish Human Rights Advocate, Poet, Nazand Begikhani Fights For Gender Equality," 18 Mar. 2021 America’s comparative chip advantage is engineering, and those jobs are high-paying. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "The Semiconductor Shortage," 12 Mar. 2021 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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Time Traveler for comparative

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for comparative

Last Updated

6 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Comparative.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/comparative. Accessed 10 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for comparative

comparative

adjective

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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