great

See also: great-

EnglishEdit

Wikipedia has an article on:

Wikipedia

EtymologyEdit

From Middle English greet (great, large), from Old English grēat (big, thick, coarse, stour, massive), from Proto-Germanic *grautaz (big in size, coarse, coarse grained), from Proto-Indo-European *ghrewə- (to fell, put down, fall in). Cognate with Scots great (coarse in grain or texture, thick, great), West Frisian grut (large, great), Dutch groot (large, stour), German groß (large), Old English grēot (earth, sand, grit), Latin grandis (great,big), Albanian ngre (I lift, heave, stand, elevate). More at grit.

PronunciationEdit

AdjectiveEdit

great (comparative greater, superlative greatest)

  1. Very big, large scale.
    A great storm is approaching our shores.
    • 1922, Ben Travers, chapter 1, A Cuckoo in the Nest[1]:
      “[…] the awfully hearty sort of Christmas cards that people do send to other people that they don't know at all well. You know. The kind that have mottoes like
        Here's rattling good luck and roaring good cheer, / With lashings of food and great hogsheads of beer. […]”
    • 1963, Margery Allingham, chapter 7, The China Governess[2]:
      ‘Children crawled over each other like little grey worms in the gutters,’ he said. ‘The only red things about them were their buttocks and they were raw. Their faces looked as if snails had slimed on them and their mothers were like great sick beasts whose byres had never been cleared. […]’
    • 2013 July 19, Timothy Garton Ash, “Where Dr Pangloss meets Machiavelli”, The Guardian Weekly, volume 189, number 6, page 18: 
      Hidden behind thickets of acronyms and gorse bushes of detail, a new great game is under way across the globe. Some call it geoeconomics, but it's geopolitics too. The current power play consists of an extraordinary range of countries simultaneously sitting down to negotiate big free trade and investment agreements.
  2. Very good.
    Dinner was great.
    • 1918, W. B. Maxwell, chapter 5, The Mirror and the Lamp:
      He was thinking; but the glory of the song, the swell from the great organ, the clustered lights, […], the height and vastness of this noble fane, its antiquity and its strength—all these things seemed to have their part as causes of the thrilling emotion that accompanied his thoughts.
  3. Important.
    • William Shakespeare (1564-1616)
      He doth object I am too great of birth.
    • 1910, Emerson Hough, chapter 1, The Purchase Price:
      “[…] We are engaged in a great work, a treatise on our river fortifications, perhaps ? But since when did army officers afford the luxury of amanuenses in this simple republic ? []
  4. Title referring to an important leader.
    Alexander the Great
  5. Superior; admirable; commanding; applied to thoughts, actions, and feelings.
    a great nature
  6. Endowed with extraordinary powers; uncommonly gifted; able to accomplish vast results; strong; powerful; mighty; noble.
    a great hero, scholar, genius, philosopher, etc.
  7. (obsolete) Pregnant; large with young.
    • Bible, Psalms lxxviii. 71
      the ewes great with young
  8. More than ordinary in degree; very considerable.
    to use great caution;   to be in great pain

Usage notesEdit

In simple situations, using modifiers of intensity such as fairly, somewhat, etc. can lead to an awkward construction, with the exception of certain common expressions such as “so great” and “really great”. In particular “very great” is unusually strong as a reaction, and in many cases “great” or its meaning of “very good” will suffice.

SynonymsEdit

Derived termsEdit

TranslationsEdit

The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

InterjectionEdit

great

  1. Expression of gladness and content about something.
    Great! Thanks for the wonderful work.
  2. sarcastic inversion thereof.
    Oh, great! I just dumped all 500 sheets of the manuscript all over and now I have to put them back in order.

TranslationsEdit

NounEdit

great (plural greats)

  1. A person of major significance, accomplishment or acclaim.
    Newton and Einstein are two of the greats of the history of science.
  2. (typographically plural, grammatically singular proper noun) A course of academic study devoted to the works of such persons and also known as Literae Humaniores; the "Greats" name has official status with respect to Oxford University's program and is widely used as a colloquialism in reference to similar programs elsewhere.
    Spencer read Greats at Oxford, taking a starred first.
  3. (music) The main division in a pipe organ, usually the loudest division.

TranslationsEdit

AdverbEdit

great (not comparable)

  1. very well (in a very satisfactory manner)
    Those mechanical colored pencils work great because they don't have to be sharpened.

TranslationsEdit

Derived termsEdit

StatisticsEdit

AnagramsEdit


Old EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

From Proto-Germanic *grautaz (big in size, coarse, coarse grained), from Proto-Indo-European *ghrewə- (to fell, put down, fall in). Cognate with Old Saxon grōt (large, thick, coarse, stour), Old High German grōz (large, thick, coarse), Old English grot (particle). More at groat.

PronunciationEdit

AdjectiveEdit

grēat

  1. great, massive
  2. tall
  3. thick; stout
  4. coarse

DeclensionEdit

DescendantsEdit


ScotsEdit

Alternative formsEdit

EtymologyEdit

From Old English grēat, from Proto-Germanic *grautaz.

PronunciationEdit

  • IPA(key): [grɛt], [grɪt]
  • (North Northern Scots) IPA(key): [grit]

AdjectiveEdit

great (comparative greater, superlative greatest)

  1. great
  2. coarse (in grain or texture)
  3. (of things) thick, bulky, roomy
  4. (of people) big, stout
  5. (of a river) swollen with rain, in flood
  6. (of the sea) high, stormy
  7. intimate, friendly
Last modified on 11 April 2014, at 07:02