Hypertext Webster Gateway: "extreme"

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Extreme \Ex*treme"\, n.
1. The utmost point or verge; that part which terminates a
body; extremity.

2. Utmost limit or degree that is supposable or tolerable;
hence, furthest degree; any undue departure from the mean;
-- often in the plural: things at an extreme distance from
each other, the most widely different states, etc.; as,
extremes of heat and cold, of virtue and vice; extremes

His parsimony went to the extreme of meanness.

3. An extreme state or condition; hence, calamity, danger,
distress, etc. ``Resolute in most extremes.'' --Shak.

4. (Logic) Either of the extreme terms of a syllogism, the
middle term being interposed between them.

5. (Math.) The first or the last term of a proportion or

{In the extreme} as much as possible. ``The position of the
Port was difficult in the extreme.'' --J. P. Peters.

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Extreme \Ex*treme"\, a. [L. extremus, superl. of exter, extrus,
on the outside, outward: cf. F. extr[^e]me. See {Exterior}.]
1. At the utmost point, edge, or border; outermost; utmost;
farthest; most remote; at the widest limit.

2. Last; final; conclusive; -- said of time; as, the extreme
hour of life.

3. The best of worst; most urgent; greatest; highest;
immoderate; excessive; most violent; as, an extreme case;
extreme folly. ``The extremest remedy.'' --Dryden.
``Extreme rapidity.'' --Sir W. Scott.

Yet extreme gusts will blow out fire. --Shak.

4. Radical; ultra; as, extreme opinions.

The Puritans or extreme Protestants. --Gladstone.

5. (Mus.) Extended or contracted as much as possible; -- said
of intervals; as, an extreme sharp second; an extreme flat

{Extreme and mean ratio} (Geom.), the relation of a line and
its segments when the line is so divided that the whole is
to the greater segment is to the less.

{Extreme distance}. (Paint.) See {Distance}., n., 6.

{Extreme unction}. See under {Unction}.

Note: Although this adjective, being superlative in
signification, is not properly subject to comparison,
the superlative form not unfrequently occurs,
especially in the older writers. ``Tried in his
extremest state.'' --Spenser. ``Extremest hardships.''
--Sharp. ``Extremest of evils.'' --Bacon. ``Extremest
verge of the swift brook.'' --Shak. ``The sea's
extremest borders.'' --Addison.

From WordNet (r) 1.7 (wn)

adj 1: of the greatest possible degree or extent or intensity;
"extreme cold"; "extreme caution"; "extreme pleasure";
"utmost contempt"; "to the utmost degree"; "in the
uttermost distress" [syn: {utmost(a)}, {uttermost(a)}]
2: far beyond a norm in quantity or amount or degree; to an
utmost degree; "an extreme example"; "extreme
temperatures"; "extreme danger"
3: beyond a norm in views or actions; "an extreme
conservative"; "an extreme liberal"; "extreme views on
integration"; "extreme opinions"
4: most distant in any direction; "the extreme edge of town"
n 1: the furthest or highest degree of something; "he carried it
to extremes"
2: the point located farthest from the middle of something
[syn: {extreme point}, {extremum}]

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