unusually or comparatively large in size or dimensions: A great fire destroyed nearly half the city.
large in number; numerous: Great hordes of tourists descend on Europe each summer.
unusual or considerable in degree, power, intensity, etc.: great pain.
wonderful; first-rate; very good: We had a great time. That's great!
being such in an extreme or notable degree: great friends; a great talker.
notable; remarkable; exceptionally outstanding: a great occasion.
important; highly significant or consequential: the great issues in American history.
distinguished; famous: a great inventor.
or lofty character: great thoughts.
chief or principal: the great hall; his greatest novel.
of high rank, official position, or social standing: a great noble.
much in use or favor: “Humor” was a great word with the old physiologists.
of extraordinary powers; having unusual merit; very admirable: a great statesman.
of considerable duration or length: We waited a great while for the train.
15. Informal. a.
enthusiastic about some specified activity (usually followed by at, for, or on ): He's great on reading poetry aloud.
skillful; expert (usually followed by at or on ): He's great at golf.
being of one generation more remote from the family relative specified (used in combination): a great-grandson.
Informal. very well: Things have been going great for him.
a person who has achieved importance or distinction in a field: She is one of the theater's greats.
great persons, collectively: England's literary great.
20. (often initial capital letter) greats, (used with a singular verb) . Also called great go. British Informal. a.
the final examination for the bachelor's degree in the classics and mathematics, or Literae Humaniores, especially at Oxford University and usually for honors.
(used to express acceptance, appreciation, approval, admiration, etc.).
(used ironically or facetiously to express disappointment, annoyance, distress, etc.): Great! We just missed the last train home.
great with child, being in the late stages of pregnancy.
Origin: Related forms
before 900; Middle English greet, Old English grēat; cognate with Dutch groot, German gross
1. immense, enormous, gigantic, huge, vast, grand. Great, big, large refer to size, extent, and degree. In reference to the size and extent of concrete objects, big is the most general and most colloquial word, large is somewhat more formal, and great is highly formal and even poetic, suggesting also that the object is notable or imposing: a big tree; a large tree; a great oak; a big field; a large field; great plains. When the reference is to degree or a quality, great is the usual word: great beauty; great mistake; great surprise; although big sometimes alternates with it in colloquial style: a big mistake; a big surprise; large is not used in reference to degree, but may be used in a quantitative reference: a large number (great number ). 6. noteworthy. 7. weighty, serious, momentous, vital, critical. 8. famed, eminent, noted, notable, prominent, renowned. 9. elevated, exalted, dignified. 10. main, grand, leading.
1. small. 6–8, 10, 11, 14. insignificant.