com·​par·​i·​son kəm-ˈper-ə-sən How to pronounce comparison (audio)
: the act or process of comparing: such as
: the representing of one thing or person as similar to or like another
His poetry invites comparison with the poems of Robert Frost.
: an examination of two or more items to establish similarities and dissimilarities
His faults seem minor by comparison.
a comparison of the sports cars
: identity of features : similarity
several points of comparison between the two
: the modification of an adjective or adverb to denote different levels of quality, quantity, or relation

Examples of comparison in a Sentence

a comparison of the data from the two studies the comparison of monkeys to humans I don't think comparisons of her situation and mine are appropriate.
Recent Examples on the Web Germany has watched its economic brand diminish in the face of economic indicators that make analysts cringe and embarrassing comparisons with the rampant U.S. Ryan Hogg, Fortune Europe, 19 Feb. 2024 Another factor keeping investors in ProShares’ higher cost fund could be taxes, specifically in comparison to the capital-gains taxes that for some BITO holders with large paper profits. Javier Paz, Forbes, 19 Feb. 2024 The consumer market for pet reptiles was sluggish by comparison; through the nineteen-eighties, wildlife traders viewed parrots as more profitable. Rebecca Giggs, The New Yorker, 19 Feb. 2024 Presidents Day is almost here, and the long weekend has ushered in a truly impressive array of sales, all of which pale in comparison to the deals available at REI right now. Merrell Readman, Travel + Leisure, 16 Feb. 2024 By comparison, a Delaware chancery judge starts at almost $185,000. Madlin Mekelburg, Fortune, 16 Feb. 2024 In other words, all other things pale in comparison. Eleanor Dearman, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 15 Feb. 2024 For comparison, having one fewer child saves 58.6 metric tons each year. Trevor Hedberg, The Conversation, 15 Feb. 2024 In comparison, Sheffield’s candidacy for the title is distinctly homespun. Rory Smith, New York Times, 14 Feb. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'comparison.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English, from Anglo-French comparison, from Latin comparation-, comparatio, from comparare — see compare entry 1

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of comparison was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near comparison

Cite this Entry

“Comparison.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition


com·​par·​i·​son kəm-ˈpar-ə-sən How to pronounce comparison (audio)
: the act of comparing : the state of being compared
: change in the form of an adjective or an adverb (as by having -er or -est added or more or most prefixed) to show different levels of quality, quantity, or relation
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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