Definition of "relative" []

  • Having pertinence or relevance; connected or related. (adjective)
  • Considered in comparison with something else: the relative quiet of the suburbs. (adjective)
  • Dependent on or interconnected with something else; not absolute. See Synonyms at dependent. (adjective)
  • Grammar Referring to or qualifying an antecedent, as the pronoun who in the man who was on TV or that in the dictionary that I use. (adjective)
  • Music Having the same key signature. Used of major and minor scales and keys: A minor is the relative minor of C major. (adjective)
  • Having meaning or significance only in relation to something else; not absolute (adjective)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

  • (of a scientific quantity) being measured or stated relative to some other substance or measurement (adjective)
  • Comparative or respective (adjective)
  • In proportion (to); corresponding (to) (adjective)
  • Having reference (to); pertinent (to) (adjective)
  • Denoting or belonging to a class of words that function as subordinating conjunctions in introducing relative clauses. In English, relative pronouns and determiners include who, which, and that (adjective)
  • Denoting or relating to a clause (relative clause) that modifies a noun or pronoun occurring earlier in the sentence (adjective)
  • (of a musical key or scale) having the same key signature as another key or scale (adjective)
  • A person who is related by blood or marriage; relation (noun)
  • A relative pronoun, clause, or grammatical construction (noun) (c) HarperCollins Publishers Ltd 2016

Use "relative" in a sentence
  • "T.e philosopher P.T. Geach first broached the subject of relative identity and introduced the phrase ˜relative identity™."
  • "And, indeed, so long as relative age only is spoken of, correspondence in succession _is_ correspondence in age; it is _relative_ contemporaneity."
  • "_relative_ rarity of the main varieties of each stamp at least; and it is this relative rarity that we are after in order to approximate the original supplies of the main varieties."