WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2015
su•per•la•tive /səˈpɝlətɪv, sʊ-/USA pronunciation adj. 
  1. of the highest kind or order:The dinner was superlative.
  2. Grammarof or designating the highest degree of comparison of adjectives and adverbs, used to show the extreme or greatest in quality, quantity, or intensity, as in smallest, best, and most carefully, the superlative forms of small, good, and carefully. Compare comparative (def. 4),comparativepositive (def. 22).positive d="20"

  • [countable] a superlative person or thing.
    • [uncountable; usually: the + ~] the superlative degree of an adjective or adverb:Put the adjective good into the superlative.
    • [countable] the superlative form of an adjective or adverb:The words and phrases smallest, best, and most carefully are superlatives.
    su•per•la•tive•ly, adv.: She performed superlatively well during the concert.See -lat1-.

    Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

    superlative /suːˈpɜːlətɪv/ adj
    1. of outstanding quality, degree, etc; supreme
    2. denoting the form of an adjective or adverb that expresses the highest or a very high degree of quality. In English the superlative degree is usually marked by the suffix -est or the word most, as in loudest or most loudly
    3. (of language or style) excessive; exaggerated
    1. a thing that excels all others or is of the highest quality
    2. the superlative form of an adjective
    3. the highest degree; peak
    Etymology: 14th Century: from Old French superlatif, via Late Latin from Latin superlātus extravagant, from superferre to carry beyond, from super- + ferre to bear

    suˈperlatively adv suˈperlativeness n

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