com·​par·​i·​son | \ kəm-ˈper-ə-sən How to pronounce comparison (audio) , -ˈpa-rə-\

Definition of comparison

1 : the act or process of comparing: such as
a : the representing of one thing or person as similar to or like another His poetry invites comparison with the poems of Robert Frost.
b : an examination of two or more items to establish similarities and dissimilarities His faults seem minor by comparison. a comparison of the sports cars
2 : identity of features : similarity several points of comparison between the two
3 : 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.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Others note that France — certainly in comparison to the United States — already has stringent hate speech legislation, in which statements of the varieties specified in the new bill are already punishable by law. James Mcauley, Washington Post, "France moves toward a law requring Facebook to delete hate speech within 24 hours," 10 July 2019 For many, the stress and labor of child-rearing pales in comparison to the joy and deep purpose of raising their kids. John C. Havens, Quartz, "Will we lose our rights as parents once robots are better at raising our kids?," 10 July 2019 Although sitting for a studio portrait was a relatively lengthy process, the amount of effort required paled in comparison to posing for a painting or sculpture. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, "How the Camera Introduced Americans to Their Heroines," 9 July 2019 But in terms of substantial round of job losses, Deutsche Bank’s plans pale in comparison to other massive corporate layoffs since 2009. Michelle Cheng, Quartz at Work, "How Deutsche Bank’s 18,000 job cuts stack up to other mass layoffs," 8 July 2019 This tour in comparison to the last tour is way bigger. Tamar Herman, Billboard, "GOT7 Talk 'Spinning Top' Album, Dealing With Stress & Their Future: 'We're Going to Stay Together'," 8 July 2019 Every signing and press release on Saturday, though, paled in comparison to the blockbuster moves that occurred early Saturday morning and won't become official for some time. Matt Velazquez, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Bucks re-sign Lopez, trade Brogdon, but Saturday's biggest move was Kawhi's departure," 6 July 2019 Williamson finished with 10 points, 3 rebounds, and a steal, but his debut paled in comparison to the stunning earthquake. Gary Washburn,, "After Zion shakes NBA world, earthquake takes over," 6 July 2019 If Lucas is messing with his friends, the trollery pales in comparison to what show creators Matt and Ross Duffer are doing. Peter Rubin, WIRED, "In Season 3, Stranger Things Rediscovers Its Groove," 4 July 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for comparison

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

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More Definitions for comparison



English Language Learners Definition of comparison

: the act of looking at things to see how they are similar or different
: the act of suggesting that two or more things are similar or in the same category


com·​par·​i·​son | \ kəm-ˈper-ə-sən How to pronounce comparison (audio) \

Kids Definition of comparison

1 : the act of examining things to see if they are similar or different : the condition of being examined to find similarity or difference
2 : similarity There's no comparison between the two models.
3 : change in the form and meaning of an adjective or an adverb (as by adding -er or -est to the word or by adding more or most before the word) to show different levels of quality, quantity, or relation

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More from Merriam-Webster on comparison

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with comparison

Spanish Central: Translation of comparison

Nglish: Translation of comparison for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of comparison for Arabic Speakers

Comments on comparison

What made you want to look up comparison? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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