Synonyms & Antonyms of ultimate

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 of the greatest or highest degree or quantity
  • the ultimate speed yet attained by a land-based vehicle

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2 following all others of the same kind in order or time
  • the ultimate speaker at today's meeting

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3 most distant from a center
  • the ultimate edges of the universe

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Synonyms & Antonyms of ultimate (Entry 2 of 2)

1 as in epitome, quintessence

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2 as in best, utmost

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Frequently Asked Questions About ultimate

How does the adjective ultimate contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of ultimate are final, last, and terminal. While all these words mean "following all others (as in time, order, or importance)," ultimate implies the last degree or stage of a long process beyond which further progress or change is impossible.

the ultimate collapse of the system

When would final be a good substitute for ultimate?

The words final and ultimate are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, final applies to that which definitely closes a series, process, or progress.

final day of school

In what contexts can last take the place of ultimate?

While the synonyms last and ultimate are close in meaning, last applies to something that comes at the end of a series but does not always imply that the series is completed or stopped.

last page of a book

last news we had of him

When could terminal be used to replace ultimate?

The synonyms terminal and ultimate are sometimes interchangeable, but terminal may indicate a limit of extension, growth, or development.

terminal phase of a disease

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Time Traveler for ultimate

Time Traveler

The first known use of ultimate was in 1640

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Cite this Entry

“Ultimate.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Sep. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on ultimate

Nglish: Translation of ultimate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ultimate for Arabic Speakers


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