utmost

adjective
ut·​most | \ ˈət-ˌmōst How to pronounce utmost (audio) , especially Southern -məst\

Definition of utmost

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : situated at the farthest or most distant point : extreme the utmost point of the earth— John Hunt
2 : of the greatest or highest degree, quantity, number, or amount a matter of utmost concern

utmost

noun

Definition of utmost (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the most possible : the extreme limit : the highest attainable point or degree the utmost in reliability
2 : the highest, greatest, or best of one's abilities, powers, and resources will do our utmost to help

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Synonyms & Antonyms for utmost

Synonyms: Adjective

extreme, farthermost, farthest, furthermost, furthest, outermost, outmost, remotest, ultimate

Antonyms: Adjective

inmost, innermost, nearest

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Did You Know?

Adjective

Utmost traces back to the Old English Ūtmest, a superlative adjective formed from the adverb Ūt, meaning "out." Ūtmest eventually evolved into utmost, perhaps influenced by the spelling of the word most. Not surprisingly, the earlier sense of utmost carries the same meaning as outermost. The second sense of utmost, meaning "of the greatest or highest degree," first appeared in English in the 14th century but didn't see frequent use until almost 400 years later. A related word is utter, meaning "absolute" or "total," as in the phrase utter chaos; it comes from Old English utera, meaning "outer," and ultimately from Ūt.

Examples of utmost in a Sentence

Adjective

supreme power that extended to the utmost points of the empire inhabitants of the war-ravaged region are experiencing the utmost misery imaginable

Noun

This new system represents the utmost in modern technology. It's designed to provide the utmost in comfort. We had to push ourselves to the utmost to finish the job in time.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The actress reacted with the utmost joy when the nominations were announced last month. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Why Gwendoline Christie Submitted Herself for Emmys Consideration When HBO Didn't," 8 Aug. 2019 Because children are fragile and must be cared for to the utmost degree. Gil Villagran, The Mercury News, "Opinion: When will American brutality against border children end?," 16 July 2019 That plan embodies Sessions’s approach to immigration policy: pushing the executive powers of the attorney general to their utmost point, while following the standard process (or at least not violating any processes directly). Dara Lind, Vox, "Jeff Sessions’s carefully built deportation machine will outlast him," 8 Nov. 2018 Keeping everything fair and transparent is of the utmost importance. David Lindquist, Indianapolis Star, "Battle of the Bands competition revived at the Hi-Fi and the Vogue," 14 Aug. 2019 Still, there were doubters—all three of his majors had come on bombers golf courses where his greatest strength, the driver, was of utmost importance. Daniel Rapaport, SI.com, "Eight Takeaways From the PGA Tour's Regular Season," 6 Aug. 2019 Of utmost importance was protecting the value of Prosecco; rosé should enhance the region rather than detract. Stephanie Cain, Fortune, "Rosé Prosecco Doesn’t Actually Exist—But It Will Soon," 21 July 2019 But of utmost importance to the Beyhive is the question: How is Beyoncé's performance as lioness Nala going down with the critics? Bryan Alexander, USA TODAY, "Can Beyonce feel 'The Lion King' love? What critics are saying about her Nala performance," 11 July 2019 Addressing the concerns of parents is of utmost importance to Perrigo, and consumers can call Consumer Affairs with any questions at 866-629-6181. Helen Murphy, PEOPLE.com, "Over 23,000 Containers of Baby Formula, Sold at Walmart, Recalled Due to Concerns of Metal," 22 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Government requires the utmost but return is minimal. oregonlive.com, "Quirky 1980s campaign ‘wish book’ captures Oregonians’ hopes, dreams and good times on state’s back roads," 22 July 2019 At some point, the massive investment in time and Advil needed to compete to the utmost just isn’t worth it anymore. Paul Daugherty, Cincinnati.com, "Doc's Morning Line: By midnight July 24, the Reds will have charted their course.," 17 July 2019 Sweden has done its utmost to work for Mr Sigley under our bilateral agreement with Australia. Time, "Australian Student Released After Detention in North Korea," 4 July 2019 Sweden has done its utmost to work for Mr Sigley under our bilateral agreement with Australia. Rod Mcguirk, USA TODAY, "North Korea releases Australian student detained for week: 'I'm OK'," 4 July 2019 Nevertheless, London’s rivals are doing their utmost. The Economist, "London’s reign as the world’s capital of capital is at risk," 29 June 2019 Hannah White of the Institute for Government, another think-tank, concludes that, though MPs may do their utmost to stop no-deal, a determined prime minister might thwart them. The Economist, "Tory candidates are misleading people about a no-deal Brexit," 13 June 2019 The loyal citizens of San Diego, realizing that the veterans of the Civil war are fast passing and that this city may never again have the honor of entertaining them, are prepared to do their utmost for the aged guests. Evening Tribune, San Diego Union-Tribune, "From the Archives: 1924: San Diego hosts Civil War veterans," 9 June 2019 Britain’s Parliament has voted not to let the country leave the EU without a divorce agreement and will do its utmost to prevent a no-deal Brexit. Washington Post, "What next for tumultuous UK Brexit path as May steps down?," 8 June 2019

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

Adjective

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

Noun

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

History and Etymology for utmost

Adjective

Middle English, alteration of utmest, from Old English ūtmest, superlative adjective, from ūt out, adverb — more at out

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Dictionary Entries near utmost

utilize

ut infra

Utman Khel

utmost

Uto-Aztecan

utopia

utopian

Statistics for utmost

Last Updated

5 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for utmost

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

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More Definitions for utmost

utmost

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of utmost

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: greatest or highest in degree, number, or amount
formal : farthest or most distant

utmost

noun

English Language Learners Definition of utmost (Entry 2 of 2)

: the highest point or degree that can be reached

utmost

adjective
ut·​most | \ ˈət-ˌmōst How to pronounce utmost (audio) \

Kids Definition of utmost

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: of the greatest or highest degree or amount The message is of the utmost importance.

utmost

noun

Kids Definition of utmost (Entry 2 of 2)

: the greatest or highest degree or amount She stretched her arm to the utmost.

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More from Merriam-Webster on utmost

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with utmost

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for utmost

Spanish Central: Translation of utmost

Nglish: Translation of utmost for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of utmost for Arabic Speakers

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