[ ik-streem ]
See synonyms for: extremeextremes on Thesaurus.com

adjective,ex·trem·er, ex·trem·est.
  1. of a character or kind farthest removed from the ordinary or average: extreme measures.

  2. utmost or exceedingly great in degree: extreme joy.

  1. farthest from the center or middle; outermost; endmost: the extreme limits of a town.

  2. farthest, utmost, or very far in any direction: an object at the extreme point of vision.

  3. exceeding the bounds of moderation: extreme fashions.

  4. going to the utmost or very great lengths in action, habit, opinion, etc.: an extreme conservative.

  5. last or final: extreme hopes.

  6. Chiefly Sports. very dangerous or difficult: extreme skiing.

  1. the utmost or highest degree, or a very high degree: cautious to an extreme.

  2. one of two things as remote or different from each other as possible: the extremes of joy and grief.

  1. the furthest or utmost length; an excessive length, beyond the ordinary or average: extremes in dress.

  2. an extreme act, measure, condition, etc.: the extreme of poverty.

  3. Mathematics.

    • the first or the last term, as of a proportion or series.

    • a relative maximum or relative minimum value of a function in a given region.

  4. Logic. the subject or the predicate of the conclusion of a syllogism; either of two terms that are separated in the premises and brought together in the conclusion.

  5. Archaic. the utmost point, or extremity, of something.

Origin of extreme

First recorded in 1425–75; late Middle English, from Latin extrēmus “most outward,” superlative of exterus “outward”; see exterior

synonym study For extreme

6. See radical.

Other words for extreme

Opposites for extreme

Other words from extreme

  • ex·treme·ness, noun
  • o·ver·ex·treme, adjective
  • qua·si-ex·treme, adjective
  • su·per·ex·treme, adjective
  • su·per·ex·treme·ly, adverb
  • su·per·ex·treme·ness, noun
  • un·ex·treme, adjective

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use extreme in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for extreme


/ (ɪkˈstriːm) /

  1. being of a high or of the highest degree or intensity: extreme cold; extreme difficulty

  2. exceeding what is usual or reasonable; immoderate: extreme behaviour

  1. very strict, rigid, or severe; drastic: an extreme measure

  2. (prenominal) farthest or outermost in direction: the extreme boundary

  3. meteorol of, relating to, or characteristic of a continental climate

  1. the highest or furthest degree (often in the phrases in the extreme, go to extremes)

  2. (often plural) either of the two limits or ends of a scale or range of possibilities: extremes of temperature

  1. maths

    • the first or last term of a series or a proportion

    • a maximum or minimum value of a function

  2. logic the subject or predicate of the conclusion of a syllogism

Origin of extreme

C15: from Latin extrēmus outermost, from exterus on the outside; see exterior

Derived forms of extreme

  • extremeness, noun

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for extreme


[ ĭk-strēm ]

  1. Either the first or fourth term of a proportion of four terms. In the proportion 23 = 46, the extremes are 2 and 6. Compare mean.

  2. A maximum or minimum value of a function.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.