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These adjectives describe what belongs to or dates from an earlier time or period. Old is the most general term: old lace; an old saying.
Ancient pertains to the distant past: "the hills, / Rock-ribbed, and ancient as the sun" (William Cullen Bryant).
Archaic implies a very remote, often primitive period: an archaic Greek bronze of the seventh century bc.
Antediluvian applies to what is extremely outdated: "I ... went out to reconnoiter a fresh typewriter ribbon for Professor Mitwisser's antediluvian machine" (Cynthia Ozick).
Antique is applied to what is especially appreciated or valued because of its age: antique furniture; an antique vase.
Antiquated describes what is out of date, no longer fashionable, or discredited: "No idea is so antiquated that it was not once modern. No idea is so modern that it will not someday be antiquated" (Ellen Glasgow).
elder eldest older oldest
The elder of two people is the one who was born first.
If you have a sister or brother who was born before you, you can refer to them as your elder sister or brother.
The eldest of a group of people, especially the brothers and sisters in a family, is the one who was born first.
Elder and eldest are slightly formal, and many people do not use them at all. Instead of 'elder' and 'eldest' you can use older and oldest.
You can use older and oldest in some ways in which you cannot use 'elder'. For example, you can use older after be, get, or grow, and in front of than.
You cannot use 'elder' in any of these ways.
You can also use older and oldest to talk about things.
You cannot use 'elder' or 'eldest' to talk about things.
|Adj.||1.||older - advanced in years; (`aged' is pronounced as two syllables); "aged members of the society"; "elderly residents could remember the construction of the first skyscraper"; "senior citizen"|
old - (used especially of persons) having lived for a relatively long time or attained a specific age; "his mother is very old"; "a ripe old age"; "how old are you?"
|2.||older - used of the older of two persons of the same name especially used to distinguish a father from his son; "Bill Adams, Sr."|
senior - older; higher in rank; longer in length of tenure or service; "senior officer"
|3.||older - skilled through long experience; "an old offender"; "the older soldiers"|