comparative

adjective
com·​par·​a·​tive | \ kəm-ˈper-ə-tiv , -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

almost, approximate, near, relative

Antonyms: Adjective

absolute, complete, downright, out-and-out, outright, perfect, pure, unqualified

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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

Then the question is: What’s your comparative advantage? Sean Illing, Vox, "How to do good better," 14 Dec. 2018 There is a rich literature in comparative law showing that decisions of institutional design can have significant impacts not only on outcomes but the entire stability and legitimacy of a governance structure. Casey Newton, The Verge, "How Kevin Hart tweeted himself out of a job hosting the Oscars," 8 Dec. 2018 Leading into the all important 2018 holiday season, the companies' comparative console war outlooks seem to have changed a bit. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Before crucial holiday season, Nintendo struggles as Sony shines," 30 Oct. 2018 Their relationship goes back to 2014 when Paul was still in social media’s comparative good graces. Patricia Hernandez, The Verge, "Meet the babysitter who helps Logan Paul stay out of trouble on YouTube," 3 Dec. 2018 Professor Avita Ronell, a world-renowned professor of German and comparative literature, released a statement on Friday in response to a lawsuit filed against her this week by the former student and advisee, Nimrod Reitman. Stephen R. Groves, Fox News, "Professor says emails were 'gay-coded,' not sex harassment," 17 Aug. 2018 Based on a comparative analysis with Mr. Ellingson's driver's license, authorities have identified him as the person in the photograph. Cyrus Farivar, Ars Technica, "Silk Road’s alleged hitman, “redandwhite,” arrested in Vancouver," 21 Nov. 2018 Dookeran says Uber plans to constantly iterate and add that kind of comparative information over time. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "Uber launches electric scooter service," 3 Oct. 2018 But just two weeks later, the region was hit by a comparative warm spell, with thermometers spiking to a balmy 17 degrees. Ken Jennings, Condé Nast Traveler, "This Is the Coldest Permanently Inhabited Place on Earth," 10 Sep. 2018

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

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

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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 \

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 \

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 \

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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