\ ˈgrāt How to pronounce great (audio) , Southern also ˈgre(ə)t \

Definition of great

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : notably large in size : huge all creatures great and small
b : of a kind characterized by relative largeness used in plant and animal names the great horned owl
c : elaborate, ample great detail
2a : large in number or measure : numerous great multitudes
b : predominant the great majority
3 : remarkable in magnitude, degree, or effectiveness great bloodshed
4 used as a generalized term of approval had a great timeIt was just great.
5a : eminent, distinguished a great poet
b : aristocratic, grand great ladies
c : chief or preeminent over others often used in titles Lord Great Chamberlain
6 : markedly superior in character or quality especially : noble great of soul
7a : remarkably skilled great at tennis
b : marked by enthusiasm : keen great on science fiction
8 : more remote in a family relationship by a single generation than a specified relative great-grandfather
9 : long continued a great while
10 : principal, main a reception in the great hall
11 : full of emotion great with anger



Definition of great (Entry 2 of 3)

: in a great manner : well Things are going great.


plural great or greats

Definition of great (Entry 3 of 3)

: an outstandingly superior or skillful person a tribute to the greats of baseball

Examples of great in a Sentence

Adjective all creatures great and small The project will require a great amount of time and money. The building was restored at great expense. a great quantity of fish The low cost of these products gives them great appeal. There is a very great need for reform. They're in no great hurry to finish. There is a great demand for his services. an actress of great charm Is there any love greater than that between parent and child? Adverb We had some problems at first, but now things are going just great. Keep up the good work. You're doing great! See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Tank experts said the information in the documents was likely not of great value to nations hostile to the respective three countries. Noah Smith, Washington Post, 5 Aug. 2022 Alan Ball created a great series for general audiences, but it was also loaded with messaging for minority communities, especially the gay community. Keith Langston,, 5 Aug. 2022 One was of a cowed man who took great risks to testify against his murderous ex-girlfriend, and a police force determined to bury his account. New York Times, 5 Aug. 2022 After 24 months of freedom, forcing me back into it is causing great anxiety. Abigail Van Buren, oregonlive, 5 Aug. 2022 This 31-yard return sets up the Bears in great field position. Lance Reisland, cleveland, 5 Aug. 2022 The collection was dedicated to her great-grandmother Phoebe Nez, a rug weaver, who died in September 2009. Amaris Encinas, The Arizona Republic, 5 Aug. 2022 There are plenty of great works of science fiction and fantasy that rely more on character and dialogue than action set pieces. Kelly Lawler, USA TODAY, 5 Aug. 2022 The agency also says the technology holds great promise of reducing traffic crashes. Tom Krisher, ajc, 5 Aug. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb The panna cotta tasted great, but the tedium of serving it was annoying. Ben Mims, Los Angeles Times, 4 Aug. 2022 As well as sounding great, the Crossfade 3 Wireless also look superb, thanks to the tweaking of the original V-MODA design and the choice of three new colorways. Mark Sparrow, Forbes, 1 Aug. 2022 Hoping this great-sounding food and drink has the vibe to match. Megha Mcswain, Chron, 27 July 2022 That dichotomy raises an interesting question: If markets work so great, then why isn’t the price system always used to direct production? Dominic Pino, National Review, 13 July 2022 Everything bagel seasoning breadcrumbs would work great on a crisp salad with crunchy greens like iceberg or Little Gem. June Kim, Bon Appétit, 30 June 2022 In addition to looking great on a shelf, this toys provides a sensory experience via the pop-up rods of different heights that kids can match to the different colors on the cloud. Rachel Rothman, Good Housekeeping, 20 July 2022 The contrast between his initial appearance and his personality is what makes their chemistry so great in the film. Wisdom Iheanyichukwu,, 19 July 2022 Horace is more than just a great-looking guy and a good dancer, however. Ej Dickson, Rolling Stone, 11 July 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Our coaches have done a great of challenging our players; our players are challenging themselves and each other. Creg Stephenson |, al, 25 Mar. 2022 The good as well as the great can earn rings alike, and these Giants are more than merely good. Christina Kahrl, San Francisco Chronicle, 28 Sep. 2021 Albert Einstein Hospital in Sao Paulo said the 80-year-old soccer great is in an intensive care unit and will be transferred to a regular room on Tuesday., 6 Sep. 2021 Florida State backup quarterback McKenzie Milton nearly pulled off an emotional victory on a night the Seminoles honored Bobby Bowden, the coaching great who died at 91 of pancreatic cancer on Aug. 8., 6 Sep. 2021 Bowden, the coaching great who won two national titles with the Seminoles, died at 91 of pancreatic cancer Aug. 8. Bob Ferrante, ajc, 6 Sep. 2021 The Mexican-American great credited his comeback to Mike Tyson after the heavyweight icon competed in an exhibition last year versus Roy Jones Jr. at Staples Center. Manouk Akopyan, Los Angeles Times, 21 July 2021 The backers of the league, CBS included, love the dynamic of an underdog upstaging a national great. Jenna Fryer, Star Tribune, 10 June 2021 Born in 1864, Anna Jarvis died in 1948 — the same era as my great-grandmothers Sophie and Lula. Joy Wallace Dickinson,, 9 May 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'great.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of great


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


13th century, in the meaning defined above


13th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for great

Adjective, Adverb, and Noun

Middle English grete, from Old English grēat; akin to Old High German grōz large

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Time Traveler for great

Time Traveler

The first known use of great was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near great

greasy wool


great albacore

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Statistics for great

Last Updated

7 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Great.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for great


\ ˈgrāt How to pronounce great (audio) \
greater; greatest

Kids Definition of great

1 : very large in size : huge a great mountain
2 : large in amount a great crowd
3 : long entry 1 sense 2 a great while
4 : much beyond the ordinary a great success
5 : important sense 1, distinguished a great artist
6 : very talented or successful She's great at diving.
7 : very good We had a great time.

Other Words from great

greatly adverb He's greatly admired.

More from Merriam-Webster on great

Nglish: Translation of great for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of great for Arabic Speakers


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