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v. com·pared, com·par·ing, com·pares
1. To consider or describe as similar, equal, or analogous; liken: Is it right to compare the human brain to a computer?
2. To examine in order to note the similarities or differences of: We compared the two products for quality and cost. The article compares the recent recession with the one in the early 1990s.
3. Grammar To form the positive, comparative, or superlative degree of (an adjective or adverb).
1. To be worthy of comparison; bear comparison: two concert halls that just do not compare.
2. To draw comparisons.
Comparison: a musician beyond compare.
compare notes
To exchange ideas, views, or opinions.

[Middle English comparen, from Old French comparer, from Latin comparāre, from compār, equal : com-, com- + pār, equal; see perə-2 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]

com·par′er n.
Usage Note: A common rule of usage holds that compare to and compare with are not interchangeable. To implies "in the direction of" or "toward a target," and so comparing Miriam to a summer's day means treating the summer's day as a standard or paragon and noting that Miriam, though a different kind of entity, is similar in some ways to it. With implies "together" or "side by side," and so comparing the Senate version of the bill with the House version means treating them symmetrically, as two examples of the same kind of entity, and noting both the similarities and the differences. It's a subtle distinction, and most writers accept both prepositions for both kinds of comparison, though with a preference that aligns with the traditional rule. The 2014 Usage Survey presented He compared the runner to a gazelle, where the items are in different categories and the first is likened to the second; the Panelists found to more acceptable than with by a large margin (95 percent to 55 percent). The margin of acceptability was slimmer for a sentence about assessing the similarities and differences between two comparable items: The police compared the forged signature with the original. The acceptability of with was only slightly greater than that of to (84 percent to 76 percent), and with might have been even more acceptable had the sentence been about two forged signatures.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.comparing - the act of examining resemblancescomparing - the act of examining resemblances; "they made a comparison of noise levels"; "the fractions selected for comparison must require pupils to consider both numerator and denominator"
examination, scrutiny - the act of examining something closely (as for mistakes)
likening - the act of comparing similarities
analogy - drawing a comparison in order to show a similarity in some respect; "the operation of a computer presents and interesting analogy to the working of the brain"; "the models show by analogy how matter is built up"
collation - careful examination and comparison to note points of disagreement
confrontation - a focussed comparison; bringing together for a careful comparison
contrast - the act of distinguishing by comparing differences
References in classic literature ?
It's like his writing," faltered Meg, comparing it with the note in her hand.
With anxious grapnels I had sounded my pocket, and only brought up a few pieces of silver, --So, wherever you go, Ishmael, said I to myself, as I stood in the middle of a dreary street shouldering my bag, and comparing the gloom towards the north with the darkness towards the south --wherever in your wisdom you may conclude to lodge for the night, my dear Ishmael, be sure to inquire the price, and don't be too particular.
A stand between them supported a second candle and two great volumes, to which they frequently referred, comparing them, seemingly, with the smaller books they held in their hands, like people consulting a dictionary to aid them in the task of translation.
Noel, by comparing the young lady who is now in your company with the personal description which follows these lines, and which has been communicated to me by a friend.
The picture produced an immense sensation in the little crowd; but all eyes, without comparing notes with other eyes, looked at Monsieur the Marquis.