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adj. great·er, great·est
a. Very large in size, extent, or intensity: a great pile of rubble; a great storm.
b. Of a larger size than other, similar forms: the great anteater.
c. Large in quantity or number: A great throng awaited us. See Synonyms at large.
d. Extensive in time or distance: a great delay; a great way off.
a. Remarkable or outstanding in magnitude, degree, or extent: a great crisis; great anticipation.
b. Of outstanding significance or importance: a great work of art.
c. Chief or principal: the great house on the estate.
d. Superior in quality or character; noble: a great man who dedicated himself to helping others.
e. Powerful; influential: one of the great nations of the West.
f. Eminent; distinguished: a great leader.
3. Informal
a. Very good; first-rate: We had a great time at the dance.
b. Very skillful: She is great at algebra.
c. Enthusiastic: a great lover of music.
4. Being one generation removed from the relative specified. Often used in combination: a great-granddaughter.
5. Archaic Pregnant.
1. pl. greats or great One that is great: a composer considered among the greats.
2. Music
a. A division of most pipe organs, usually containing the most powerful ranks of pipes.
b. A similar division of other organs.
adv. Informal
1. Very well: got along great with the teacher.
2. Used as an intensive with certain adjectives: a great big kiss.

[Middle English grete, from Old English grēat, thick, coarse.]

great′ly adv.
great′ness n.


(at Oxford University) pl n
1. (Education) the Honour School of Literae Humaniores, involving the study of Greek and Roman history and literature and philosophy
2. (Education) the final examinations at the end of this course
References in classic literature ?
One afternoon, when the sun was going down, a mother and her little boy sat at the door of their cottage, talking about the Great Stone Face.
Sullivan, in his History of Maine, written since the Revolution, remarks, that even then the existence of the Great Carbuncle was not entirely discredited.
There have been great officers before - Lord Hood, for instance, whom he himself regarded as the greatest sea officer England ever had.
And behold, thereby came he unawares also to the gate of the GREAT CITY.
But Aristotle was out of all patience with the account I gave him of Scotus and Ramus, as I presented them to him; and he asked them, "whether the rest of the tribe were as great dunces as themselves?
Desired at a feast to touch a lute, he said, He could not fiddle, but yet he could make a small town, a great city.
1-25) From the Heliconian Muses let us begin to sing, who hold the great and holy mount of Helicon, and dance on soft feet about the deep-blue spring and the altar of the almighty son of Cronos, and, when they have washed their tender bodies in Permessus or in the Horse's Spring or Olmeius, make their fair, lovely dances upon highest Helicon and move with vigorous feet.
She's old and lonely and has had a great deal of trouble.
The earlier voyagers fancied that the coral-building animals instinctively built up their great circles to afford themselves protection in the inner parts; but so far is this from the truth, that those massive kinds, to whose growth on the exposed outer shores the very existence of the reef depends, cannot live within the lagoon, where other delicately-branching kinds flourish.
How long he lay there senseless he could not guess; but when he opened his eyes again he was alone, except for the bodies of the dead green men and Dusarians, and the carcass of a great banth that lay half across his own.
They were armed with knives and great bludgeons and at their head marched an almost naked woman, beautiful beyond compare.
But there are a great many unreasonable ones, as I suppose you know--not yours, dear mother, for I am bound to say that you never required of me more than was natural.