[ mohst ]
/ moʊst /
adjective, superl. of much or many with more as compar.
in the greatest quantity, amount, measure, degree, or number: to win the most votes.
in the majority of instances: Most operations are successful.
greatest, as in size or extent: the most talent.
the greatest quantity, amount, or degree; the utmost: The most I can hope for is a passing grade.
the greatest number or the majority of a class specified: Most of his writing is rubbish.
the greatest number: The most this room will seat is 150.
the majority of persons: to be more sensitive than most.
the most, Slang. the ultimate in something: He's the most. That movie was the most.
adverb, superl. of much with more as compar.
in or to the greatest extent or degree (in this sense often used before adjectives and adverbs, and regularly before those of more than two syllables, to form superlative phrases having the same force and effect as the superlative degree formed by the termination -est): most rapid; most wisely.
very: a most puzzling case.
Informal. almost or nearly.
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at the most, at the maximum.Also at most.
for the most part. part(def 34).
make the most of, to use to greatest advantage; utilize fully: to make the most of an opportunity.
Origin of most
before 900; Middle English most(e), Old English māst; replacing Middle English mest(e), Old English mǣst; cognate with German meist, Gothic maists. See more
Can be confusedalmost most
11. See almost.
11. The adverb most, a shortened form of almost, is far from being either a recent development or an Americanism. It goes back to the 16th century in England, where it is now principally a dialect form. In American English it occurs before such pronouns as all, anyone, anybody, everyone, and everybody; the adjectives all, any, and every; and adverbs like anywhere and everywhere: Most everyone around here is related to everyone else. You can find that plant most anywhere. This use of most is often objected to, but it is common in the informal speech of educated persons. It is less common in edited writing except in representations of speech.
Definition for most (2 of 4)
[ men-ee ]
/ ˈmɛn i /
adjective, more, most.
constituting or forming a large number; numerous: many people.
noting each one of a large number (usually followed by a or an): For many a day it rained.
a large or considerable number of persons or things: A good many of the beggars were blind.
the many, the greater part of humankind.
many persons or things: Many of the beggars were blind. Many were unable to attend.
Origin of many
before 900; Middle English mani, meni, Old English manig, menig; akin to Old Saxon, Old High German manag, menig, Danish mange, Gothic manags
SYNONYMS FOR many
1 multifarious, multitudinous, myriad; divers, sundry, various. Many, innumerable, manifold, numerous imply the presence or succession of a large number of units. Many is a popular and common word for this idea: many times. Numerous, a more formal word, refers to a great number or to very many units: letters too numerous to mention. Innumerable denotes a number that is beyond count or, more loosely, that is extremely difficult to count: the innumerable stars in the sky. Manifold implies not only that the number is large but also that there is variety or complexity.
Related formso·ver·man·y, adjective
Definition for most (3 of 4)
[ muhch ]
/ mʌtʃ /
adjective, more, most.
great in quantity, measure, or degree: too much cake.
a great quantity, measure, or degree: Much of his research was unreliable.
a great, important, or notable thing or matter: The house is not much to look at.
adverb, more, most.
to a great extent or degree; greatly; far: to talk too much; much heavier.
nearly, approximately, or about: This is much like the others.
Origin of much
1150–1200; Middle English muche, moche, apocopated variant of muchel, mochel, Old English mycel; replacing Middle English miche(l), Old English micel great, much (cf. mickle), cognate with Old Norse mikill, Gothic mikils, Greek mégal-, suppletive stem of mégas great
Definition for most (4 of 4)
a combining form of most occurring in a series of superlatives: foremost; utmost.
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British Dictionary definitions for most (1 of 4)
/ (məʊst) /
- a great majority of; nearly allmost people like eggs
- (as pronoun; functioning as sing or plural)most of them don't know; most of it is finished
at most or at the most at the maximumthat girl is four at the most
for the most part generally
make the most of to use to the best advantageshe makes the most of her accent
than most than most othersthe leaves are greener than most
the most slang, mainly US wonderfulthat chick's the most
the most used to form the superlative of some adjectives and adverbsthe most beautiful daughter of all
the superlative of much people welcome a drink most after work
(intensifier)a most absurd story
US and Canadian informal, or dialect almostmost every town in this state; John is the more intelligent of the two; he is the most intelligent of the students
Word Origin for most
Old English māst or mǣst, whence Middle English moste, mēst; compare Old Frisian maest, Old High German meist, Old Norse mestr
More and most should be distinguished when used in comparisons. More applies to cases involving two persons, objects, etc, most to cases involving three or more
British Dictionary definitions for most (2 of 4)
forming the superlative degree of some adjectives and adverbshindmost; uppermost
Word Origin for -most
Old English -mǣst, -mest, originally a superlative suffix, later mistakenly taken as derived from mǣst (adv) most
British Dictionary definitions for most (3 of 4)
/ (ˈmɛnɪ) /
(sometimes preceded by a great or a good)
- a large number ofmany coaches; many times
- (as pronoun; functioning as plural)many are seated already
(foll by a, an, or another, and a singular noun) each of a considerable number ofmany a man
(preceded by as, too, that, etc)
- a great number ofas many apples as you like; too many clouds to see
- (as pronoun; functioning as plural)I have as many as you
the many the majority of mankind, esp the common peoplethe many are kept in ignorance while the few prosper Compare few (def. 7)
Word Origin for many
Old English manig; related to Old Frisian manich, Middle Dutch menech, Old High German manag
British Dictionary definitions for most (4 of 4)
/ (mʌtʃ) /
- (usually used with a negative) a great quantity or degree ofthere isn't much honey left
- (as pronoun)much has been learned from this
a bit much informal rather excessive
as much exactly thatI suspected as much when I heard
make much of See make of (def. 4)
not much of not to any appreciable degree or extenthe's not much of an actor really
not up to much informal of a low standardthis beer is not up to much
think much of (used with a negative) to have a high opinion ofI don't think much of his behaviour
considerablythey're much better now
practically; nearly (esp in the phrase much the same)
(usually used with a negative) often; a great dealit doesn't happen much in this country
much as or as much as even though; althoughmuch as I'd like to, I can't come
(predicative; usually used with a negative) impressive or importantthis car isn't much
Word Origin for much
Old English mycel; related to Old English micel great, Old Saxon mikil, Gothic mikils; compare also Latin magnus, Greek megas
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
Idioms and Phrases with most (1 of 3)
see at most; for the most part; make the most of.
Idioms and Phrases with most (2 of 3)
In addition to the idioms beginning with many
- many a
- many hands make light work
- many happy returns
- many is the
- as many
- good (great) many
- in so many words
- irons in the fire, too many
- so many
- too many cooks spoil the broth
Idioms and Phrases with most (3 of 3)
In addition to the idioms beginning with much
- much ado about nothing
- much as
- much less
- much sought after
- as much
- as much as
- make much of
- not miss a trick (much)
- not think much of
- pretty much
- so much
- so much for
- so much the better
- (much) sought after
- take it (just so much)
- take on (too much)
- too much of a good thing
- without so much as
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.