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Superlative (plural Superlatives)
  1. The highest extent or degree of something.
  2. (grammar) The form of an adjective that expresses which of more than two items has the highest degree of the quality expressed by the adjective; in English, formed by appending "-est" to the end of the adjective (for some short adjectives only) or putting "most" before it.
    The superlative of "big" is "biggest"
  3. (informal) An adjective used to praise something exceptional.
    Lincoln is amazing, wonderful, fantastic, and many other superlatives I can’t think of right now!


Related terms


Superlative (not comparable)

  1. Exceptionally good; of the highest quality; superb.
  2. (grammar) Of or relating to a superlative.


Rather formal, reflecting its Latin etymology; more colloquial alternatives include exceptional, fabulous, above and beyond, and others.



Olympian, absolute, accomplished, ace, aerial, aggrandized, aggrandizement, airy, altitudinous, amplification, amplified, arrant, ascending, aspiring, ballyhoo, ballyhooed, best, big talk, blowing up, burlesque, capital, caricature, champion, choice, chosen, classical, colossal, complete, consummate, crack, crass, cream, dazzling, decided, definitive, dilatation, dilation, disproportionate, dominating, downright, egregious, elect, elevated, elite, eminent, enhancement, enlargement, ethereal, exaggerated, exaggerating, exaggeration, exalted, excellent, exceptional, excess, excessive, exorbitance, exorbitant, expansion, extraordinary, extravagance, extravagant, extreme, fantastic, fat, finest, finished, first-class, first-rate, flagrant, flower, glaring, grandiloquence, grandiloquent, great, greatest, gross, haughty, heightening, high, high-flown, high-pitched, high-reaching, high-set, high-up, highest, huckstering, hyperbole, hyperbolic, hyperbolism, incomparable, inflated, inflation, inordinacy, inordinate, intolerable, lofty, magnification, magnificent, magnified, matchless, maximal, maximum, monumental, most, mounting, nonesuch, nonpareil, optimum, out-and-out, outright, outstanding, outtopping, overdone, overdrawn, overemphasis, overemphasized, overemphatic, overestimated, overestimation, overgreat, overkill, overlarge, overlooking, overpraised, oversold, overstated, overstatement, overstressed, overtopping, overwrought, paragon, paramount, peerless, perfect, pick, positive, precious, prime, prize, prodigal, prodigality, profound, profuse, profuseness, prominent, pronounced, proper, puffed, puffery, puffing up, queen, quintessence, rank, regular, select, sensationalism, shattering, shocking, singular, smashing, soaring, spectacular, spiring, stark, stark-staring, steep, sterling, stretched, stretching, sublime, super, superb, superexcellent, superior, supernal, supreme, surpassing, tall talk, terrific, the best, the best ever, the tops, the veriest, the very best, thorough, thoroughgoing, tip-top, top, top-notch, topless, toplofty, topmost, topping, total, touted, touting, towering, towery, travesty, unbearable, unconscionable, undeniable, unequivocal, unique, unmitigated, unqualified, unrelieved, unspoiled, unsurpassed, uplifted, uppermost, upreared, utmost, utter


From Middle English superlatyf from Old French superlatif from Late Latin superlātīvus from Latin superlātus (extravagant, of hyperbole), past participle of superfero (carry over) from super (above) + fero (bear, carry).


  • (RP) IPA: /suːˈpɜː.lə.tɪv/, /sjuːˈpɜː.lə.tɪv/, SAMPA: /su:"p3:(r).l@.tIv/
  • (US) IPA: /suːˈpɝː.lə.tɪv/, /sjuːˈpɝː.lə.tɪv/
  • noicon(file)




See also



superlative f.

  1. feminine plural form of superlativo