ne plus ultra

ne plus ul·​tra | \ ˌnā-ˌpləs-ˈəl-trə How to pronounce ne plus ultra (audio) , ˌnē- \

Definition of ne plus ultra

1 : the highest point capable of being attained : acme
2 : the most profound degree of a quality or state

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It is the height, the zenith, the ultimate, the crown, the pinnacle. It is the peak, the summit, the crest, the high-water mark. All these expressions, of course, mean "the highest point attainable." But ne plus ultra may top them all when it comes to expressing in a sophisticated way that something is the pink of perfection. It is said that the term's predecessor, non plus ultra, was inscribed on the Pillars of Hercules at the Strait of Gibraltar, which marked the western end of the classical world. The phrase served as a warning: "(Let there) not (be) more (sailing) beyond." The New Latin version ne plus ultra, meaning "(go) no more beyond," found its way into English in the early 1600s.

Examples of ne plus ultra in a Sentence

this new sports car is being billed as the ne plus ultra of automotive achievement
Recent Examples on the Web The Matching Pajama Moment By mid-November of 2021, Kardashian and Davidson had graduated to the ne plus ultra of defining their relationship: matching SKIMS pajamas, captured on Instagram in the company of none other than Flavor Flav. Emma Specter, Vogue, 2 May 2022 The music of Albert Ayler—who died in 1970, at the age of thirty-four—is the ne plus ultra of jazz. Richard Brody, The New Yorker, 26 Apr. 2022 The ne plus ultra, though, was the Bullocks Wilshire tea room. Los Angeles Times, 14 Dec. 2021 The ne plus ultra of the evening, at least for me, was the aforementioned 1967 tasting. Viju Mathew, Robb Report, 8 Oct. 2021 That country’s wheels are always held up as the ne plus ultra. Charlotte Druckman, WSJ, 6 Aug. 2021 Even, for goodness’ sake, the HFPA’s ne plus ultra star, Tom Cruise, gave back his umpteen-zillion Globes (technically, three wins in seven noms). David Bloom, Forbes, 12 May 2021 Game of Thrones, which debuted 10 years ago this spring, has the dubious honor of being the ne plus ultra of rape culture on television. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, 4 May 2021 Goyard leashes and collars, in particular, are the ne plus ultra for pet-owning fashionistas in the most status-conscious corners of Paris, New York and Tokyo. Rory Satran, WSJ, 3 Apr. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of ne plus ultra

1637, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for ne plus ultra

New Latin, (go) no more beyond

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The first known use of ne plus ultra was in 1637

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Last Updated

9 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Ne plus ultra.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 May. 2022.

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