Definition of inferior
1 : situated lower down : lower
2a : of low or lower degree or rankb : of poor quality : mediocre
3 : of little or less importance, value, or merit always felt inferior to his older brother
4a : situated below another and especially another similar superior part of an upright bodyb : situated in a relatively low posterior or ventral position in a quadrupedal bodyc (1) : situated below another plant part or organ (2) : abaxial
5 : relating to or being a subscript
inferiorityplay \(ˌ)in-ˌfir-ē-ˈȯr-ə-tē, -ˈär-\ noun
inferiorlyplay \in-ˈfir-ē-ər-lē\ adverb
Examples of inferior in a Sentence
… the pearls were of inferior quality; they looked like pearlized globs of varying wrinkly shapes. —Tracie Rozhon, New York Times, 24 Aug. 2002
Sharks, rays, and ratfishes share a special burden: these cartilaginous fishes are saddled with a reputation for being somehow inferior to vertebrates blessed with bony skeletons. —Carl Zimmer, Natural History, September 2000
No longer do workers and peasants feel inferior to the university-trained. —Rhea Menzel Whitehead, Saturday Review, 4 Mar. 1972
These pearls are of inferior quality.
They were considered a socially inferior group.
He always felt inferior around his brother.
The judges voted to overturn a ruling made by an inferior court.
Recent Examples of inferior from the Web
In decades past, a blended red that didn’t give a hint of its pedigreed grapes on the front or back label would be dismissed as inferior plonk.
The former sorts of idealism and nationalism are plainly preferable, and compatible with one another; the latter are inferior and incompatible — and unfortunately, lately we’ve been getting too much of them.
The Mazda model is not a luxury car, but, as Bloomberg’s resident car expert Hannah Elliott found out, that does not mean it’s inferior.
Jones, who spent 11 years in the minors, was one of many men of color who dealt with inferior accommodations, the scorn of white teammates, and racist threats on and off the field to pursue his big-league dreams.
Studies show African-Americans often receive inferior care to white patients, potentially because of racial bias.
However, the plant material in South Africa at the time was virused and inferior.
So, outing laws against the importation of vines, de Wet smuggled chardonnay into the country from France—along with, accidentally, some inferior auxerrois—
LINK name and an inferior four-pin connector (created, to Teener's chagrin, without consulting other FireWire contributors).
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'inferior.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
INFERIOR Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of inferior for English Language Learners
: of poor quality : low or lower in quality
: of little or less importance or value
: low or lower in rank
INFERIOR Defined for Kids
Definition of inferior for Students
1 : situated lower down (as in place or importance) an inferior court
2 : of little or less importance, value, or merit He always felt inferior to his brother.
3 : of poor quality an inferior education
Definition of inferior for Students
: a less important person or thing
Medical Definition of inferior
Legal Definition of inferior
: of lower status, rank, or priority
Seen and Heard
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