Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Perfect in quality or nature; complete.
  • adj. Not mixed; pure. See Synonyms at pure.
  • adj. Not limited by restrictions or exceptions; unconditional: absolute trust.
  • adj. Unqualified in extent or degree; total: absolute silence. See Usage Note at infinite.
  • adj. Unconstrained by constitutional or other provisions: an absolute ruler.
  • adj. Not to be doubted or questioned; positive: absolute proof.
  • adj. Grammar Of, relating to, or being a word, phrase, or construction that is isolated syntactically from the rest of a sentence, as the referee having finally arrived in The referee having finally arrived, the game began.
  • adj. Grammar Of, relating to, or being a transitive verb when its object is implied but not stated. For example, inspires in We have a teacher who inspires is an absolute verb.
  • adj. Grammar Of, relating to, or being an adjective or pronoun that stands alone when the noun it modifies is being implied but not stated. For example, in Theirs were the best, theirs is an absolute pronoun and best is an absolute adjective.
  • adj. Physics Relating to measurements or units of measurement derived from fundamental units of length, mass, and time.
  • adj. Physics Relating to absolute temperature.
  • adj. Law Complete and unconditional; final.
  • n. Something that is absolute.
  • n. Philosophy Something regarded as the ultimate basis of all thought and being. Used with the.
  • n. Philosophy Something regarded as independent of and unrelated to anything else.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Independent of arbitrary units of measurement not comparative or relative as,
  • adj. Complete; unconditional; final; without encumbrances; not liable to change or cancellation.
  • adj. Pertaining to a grading system based on the knowledge of the individual and not on the comparative knowledge of the group of students.
  • adj. Concerned entirely with expressing beauty and feelings, lacking meaningful reference.
  • adj. Utilizing the body to express ideas, independent of music and costumes.
  • adj. Indicating an expression that is true for all real number; unconditional.
  • n. In a plane, the two imaginary circular points at infinity; in space of three dimensions, the imaginary circle at infinity.
  • n. A realm which exists without reference to anything else; that which can be imagined purely by itself; absolute ego.
  • n. The unity of spirit and nature; God.
  • n. The whole of reality; the totality to which everything is reduced.
  • n. Concentrated natural flower oil, used for perfumes.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Loosed from any limitation or condition; uncontrolled; unrestricted; unconditional
  • adj. Complete in itself; perfect; consummate; faultless
  • adj. Viewed apart from modifying influences or without comparison with other objects; actual; real; -- opposed to relative and comparative
  • adj. Loosed from, or unconnected by, dependence on any other being; self-existent; self-sufficing.
  • adj. Capable of being thought or conceived by itself alone; unconditioned; non-relative.
  • adj. Positive; clear; certain; not doubtful.
  • adj. Authoritative; peremptory.
  • adj. Pure; unmixed.
  • adj. Not immediately dependent on the other parts of the sentence in government. See Ablative absolute, under Ablative.
  • n. In a plane, the two imaginary circular points at infinity; in space of three dimensions, the imaginary circle at infinity.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Free from every restriction; unconditional: as, the only absolute necessity is logical necessity; absolute skepticism; absolute proof.
  • Perfect; complete; entire; possessed as a quality in the highest degree, or possessing the essential characteristics of the attribute named in the highest degree: as, absolute purity; absolute liberty.
  • Hence Perfect; free from imperfection: sometimes applied to persons.
  • Fixed; determined: not merely provisional; irrevocable.
  • Viewed independently of other similar things; not considered with reference to other similar things as standards; not comparative merely: opposed to relative: as, absolute position; absolute velocity (see below).
  • Unlimited in certain essential respects; arbitrary; despotic: applied especially to a system of government in which the will of the sovereign is comparatively unhampered by laws or usage: as, an absolute monarchy.
  • Certain; infallible.
  • Domineering; peremptory; exacting strict obedience.
  • Ultimate; not derived from anything else: as, an absolute principle. Immeasurable; not definable by measurement; not led up to by insensible gradations: as, the distinction between right and wrong is absolute.
  • In grammar, standing out of the usual syntactical relation or construction: applied to the case of a noun and an adjunct in no relation of dependence upon the rest of the sentence, and defining the time or circumstances of an action: as, the genitive absolute in Greek, the ablative absolute in Latin, the locative absolute in Sanskrit, and the nominative absolute in English.
  • n. In metaphysics: That which is free from any restriction, or is unconditioned; hence, the ultimate ground of all things; God: as, it is absurd to place a limit to the power of the Absolute.
  • n. That which is perfect or complete: as, its beauty approaches the absolute. That which is independent of some or all relations; the non-relative.
  • n. In mathematics, a locus whose projective relation to any two elements may be considered as constituting the metrical relation of these elements to one another.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. expressing finality with no implication of possible change
  • adj. perfect or complete or pure
  • adj. not capable of being violated or infringed
  • adj. complete and without restriction or qualification; sometimes used informally as intensifiers
  • adj. not limited by law
  • n. something that is conceived or that exists independently and not in relation to other things; something that does not depend on anything else and is beyond human control; something that is not relative

Etymologies

Middle English absolut, from Latin absolūtus, unrestricted, past participle of absolvere, to absolve : ab-, away; see ab-1 + solvere, to loosen; see leu- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

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