• synonyms


See more synonyms for large on Thesaurus.com
adjective, larg·er, larg·est.
  1. of more than average size, quantity, degree, etc.; exceeding that which is common to a kind or class; big; great: a large house; a large number; in large measure; to a large extent.
  2. on a great scale: a large producer of kitchen equipment.
  3. of great scope or range; extensive; broad.
  4. grand or pompous: a man given to large, bombastic talk.
  5. (of a map, model, etc.) representing the features of the original with features of its own that are relatively large so that great detail may be shown.
  6. famous; successful; important: He's very large in financial circles.
  7. Obsolete. generous; bountiful; lavish.
  8. Obsolete.
    1. unrestrained in the use of language; gross; improper.
    2. unrestrained in behavior or manner; uninhibited.
  9. Nautical. free(def 33).
Show More
  1. Music. the longest note in mensural notation.
  2. Obsolete. generosity; bounty.
Show More
  1. Nautical. with the wind free or abaft the beam so that all sails draw fully.
Show More
  1. at large,
    1. free from restraint or confinement; at liberty: The murderer is still at large.
    2. to a considerable extent; at length: to treat a subject at large.
    3. as a whole; in general: the country at large.
    4. Also at-large.representing the whole of a state, district, or body rather than one division or part of it: a delegate at large.
    5. Also at-large.having a general, as opposed to a specific, role in an organization or project: She’s the magazine’s editor-at-large.
  2. in large, on a large scale; from a broad point of view: a problem seen in large.Also in the large.
Show More

Origin of large

1125–75; Middle English < Old French < Latin larga, feminine of largus ample, generous
Related formslarge·ness, nouno·ver·large, adjectiveul·tra·large, adjectiveun·large, adjective
Can be confusedlarge largess


See more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com


1. small.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for largest

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • "Look at that dog-fish," said Vavasor, pointing to the largest in the tank.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • One of the largest of the Zeppelins was thus lost at Stuttgart in 1908.

    Flying Machines

    W.J. Jackman and Thos. H. Russell

  • The wood and cloth will be the two largest items, and these should not cost more than $10.

    Flying Machines

    W.J. Jackman and Thos. H. Russell

  • This was her first voyage, and she was said to be the largest ship out of Rotterdam.

    Ned Myers

    James Fenimore Cooper

  • But one day there came to the mountainside the largest giant Wotan had ever seen.

British Dictionary definitions for largest


  1. having a relatively great size, quantity, extent, etc; big
  2. of wide or broad scope, capacity, or range; comprehensivea large effect
  3. having or showing great breadth of understandinga large heart
  4. nautical (of the wind) blowing from a favourable direction
  5. rare overblown; pretentious
  6. generous
  7. obsolete (of manners and speech) gross; rude
Show More
  1. at large
    1. (esp of a dangerous criminal or wild animal) free; not confined
    2. roaming freely, as in a foreign country
    3. as a whole; in general
    4. in full detail; exhaustively
    5. ambassador-at-large See ambassador (def. 4)
  2. in large or in the large as a totality or on a broad scale
Show More
  1. nautical with the wind blowing from a favourable direction
  2. by and large
    1. (sentence modifier)generally; as a ruleby and large, the man is the breadwinner
    2. nauticaltowards and away from the wind
  3. loom large to be very prominent or important
Show More
Derived Formslargeness, noun

Word Origin

C12 (originally: generous): via Old French from Latin largus ample, abundant
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

Word Origin and History for largest


superlative of large (q.v.).

Show More



c.1200, "bountiful, inclined to give or spend freely," also, of areas, "great in expanse," from Old French large "broad, wide; generous, bounteous," from Latin largus "abundant, copious, plentiful; bountiful, liberal in giving," of unknown origin. Main modern meanings "extensive; big in overall size" emerged 14c. An older sense of "liberated, free from restraining influence" is preserved in at large (late 14c.). Adjective phrase larger-than-life first attested 1937 (bigger than life is from 1640s).

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with largest


see at large; big (large) as life; by and large; cog in the (a large) wheel; in some (large) measure; loom large; writ large.

Show More
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.