EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

PIE word
*úd

From Middle English utmest, utemest [and other forms], from Old English ūtmest, ūtemest [and other forms], from ūt, ūte (out; outdoors, outside) + -mest (suffix meaning ‘furthest’, used to form superlatives of some adjectives) (and conflated with most). Ūt is derived from Proto-Germanic *ūt (out, outward), from Proto-Indo-European *úd (out, outward).[1]

PronunciationEdit

AdjectiveEdit

utmost (not comparable)

  1. Situated at the most distant limit; farthest, outermost.
    Synonyms: outmost, uttermost, yondermost
    the utmost limits of the land    the utmost extent of human knowledge
    • [1633], George Herbert, “The Sacrifice”, in [Nicholas Ferrar], editor, The Temple: Sacred Poems, and Private Ejaculations, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire: [] Thomas Buck and Roger Daniel; and are to be sold by Francis Green, [], OCLC 1048966979; reprinted London: Elliot Stock, [], 1885, OCLC 54151361, page 26:
      Betwixt two thieves I [Jesus] ſpend my utmoſt breath, / As he that for ſome robberie ſuffereth.
    • 1644 October 21, John Evelyn, “[Diary entry for 11 October 1644 (Julian calendar)]”, in William Bray, editor, Memoirs, Illustrative of the Life and Writings of John Evelyn, [] , volume I, 2nd edition, London: Henry Colburn, [], published 1819, OCLC 976971842, page 72:
      [W]e coaſted within 2 leagues of Antibes, which is the utmoſt towne in France.
    • 1733, Danby Pickering, “Cap. IX. An Act to Explain and Amend Two Acts of Parliament, [], for Making Navigable the River Dun in the County of York, []”, in The Statutes at Large, from the Second to the 9th Year of King George II. [], volume XVI, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire: [] Joseph Bentham, []; for Charles Bathurst, [], published 1765, OCLC 1015505952, page 370:
      [T]he maſters, wardens, ſearchers, aſſiſtants and commonalty of the company of cutlers in Hallamſhire in the county of York, their ſucceſſors and aſſigns, are nominated and appointed undertakers of the ſaid navigation, with power to make the ſaid river navigable, at their own expence, from Holmſtile aforeſaid, up the ſaid river above Holmſtile to the utmoſt extent of Tinſley westward, [...]
    • 1852 March, Professor Larrabee, “The Heavens”, in W. C. Larrabee, editor, The Ladies’ Repository: A Monthly Periodical, Devoted to Literature and Religion, volume XII, Cincinnati, Oh.: L. Swormstedt and A. Poe; [], OCLC 247142692, page 109, column 1:
      As yet we are far from having explored the utmost depths of space. Our telescopes have only reached a limited distance into the regions of the heavens.
    • 1997, Luigi Giussani, “The Hypothesis of Revelation: Conditions for Its Acceptability”, in John Zucchi, transl., The Religious Sense, Montreal, Que.: McGill–Queen's University Press, →ISBN, page 141:
      Our nature is need for truth and fulfilment, or, in other words, happiness. [...] But this desire, having reached the extreme borders of our life experience, still does not find what it has been searching for: at the utmost frontier of its lived territory, this urgent need of ours still has not found its answer.
  2. The most extreme; greatest, ultimate.
    the utmost assiduity    the utmost harmony    the utmost misery or happiness
    • c. 1608–1609, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedy of Coriolanus”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: [] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358, [Act III, scene i], page 17, column 1:
      Ile go to him, and vndertake to bring him in peace, / Where he ſhall anſwer by a lawfull Forme, / (In peace) to his vtmoſt perill.
    • 1752, Jerome Osorio [i.e., Jerónimo Osório], “Book XI”, in James Gibbs, transl., The History of the Portuguese, during the Reign of Emmanuel: [], volume II, London: [] A[ndrew] Millar, [], OCLC 1003956408, page 239:
      She was a lady adorned with many noble virtues: the utmoſt ſtrictneſs in her life and morals, eaſy and affable in her behaviour, and agreeably modeſt in her converſation.
    • 1824, W[illiam] Bingley, Animal Biography, or, Popular Zoology; [], volume II (Mammiferous Animals—Birds), 6th edition, London: [] C[harles] and J[ohn] Rivington; [...], OCLC 82377449, pages 26–27:
      The migrations of the Economic Rats, are not less extraordinary than those of the Lemmings. In the spring of the year they collect together in amazing numbers, and proceed in a course directly westward; swimming with the utmost intrepidity over rivers, lakes, and even arms of the sea.
    • 1842 December – 1844 July, Charles Dickens, “Wherein Certain Persons are Presented to the Reader, with Whom He may, if He Please, Become Better Acquainted”, in The Life and Adventures of Martin Chuzzlewit, London: Chapman and Hall, [], published 1844, OCLC 977517776, page 16:
      "Bah!" cried John Westlock, with the utmost disgust and disdain the monosyllable is capable of expressing.
    • 1892, Walt Whitman, “Children of Adam: I Sing the Body Electric”, in Leaves of Grass [], Philadelphia, Pa.: David McKay, publisher, [], OCLC 1514723, stanza 6, page 84:
      The wildest largest passions, bliss that is utmost, sorrow that is utmost become him well, pride is for him, / The full-spread pride of man is calming and excellent to the soul, [...]
    • 1999, Susan Hodges; Roy Carlile, “Utmost Good Faith, Disclosure and Representations”, in Cases and Materials on Marine Insurance Law, London: Cavendish Publishing, →ISBN, page 213:
      A contract of marine insurance is uberrimae fidel or, as enunciated in s 17 of the Marine Insurance Act, 'a contract based upon the utmost good faith'. [...] The obligations to disclose and to abstain from misrepresentations constitute the most significant manifestations of the duty to observe utmost good faith.
    • 2001, Elizabeth Bevarly, “The Temptation of Rory Monahan”, in Katherine Garbera; Elizabeth Bevarly, An Irresistible Temptation (Harlequin Man of the Month), Don Mills, Ont.: Harlequin Enterprises, published 2015, →ISBN, chapter 1, page 184:
      Of course, everything was of utmost importance to Isabel Trent, Miriam thought with a sigh. Nevertheless she adopted her expression of utmost gravity as she replied, "Oh? I'm all ears."
    • 2005, Plato, Lesley Brown, transl., Sophist, page 236d:
      Indeed at this very moment he's slipped away with the utmost cunning into a form that's most perplexing to investigate.

Derived termsEdit

Related 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 Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

NounEdit

utmost (countable and uncountable, plural utmosts)

  1. The greatest possible capability, extent, or quantity; maximum.
    Synonym: yondermost
    at the utmost    to the utmost

TranslationsEdit

ReferencesEdit