inferior


inferior
inferior n Inferior, underling, subordinate mean one, usually a person, who is lower than another.
Inferior, the most inclusive of these terms, may be applied to anyone that is lower in some significant matter (as rank, station, quality, or value) than another; the term suggests, explicitly or by implication, a comparison, sometimes with those obviously and individually higher or superior but sometimes with those merely belonging to a level felt as higher
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that an inferior should punish a superior, is against nature— Locke

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he would be judged by his peers, and safeguarded against the obtuse hostility of his inferiorsMencken

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Napoleon was his equal or superior in the first, gravely his inferior in the second— Belloc

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they are gracious to equals, abrupt to inferiorsTemple Fielding

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Underling routinely implies subjection to the will or wishes of another; it may apply to a condition from that of a slave or servant to that of one who is just below the master but ordinarily it implies some degree of contempt
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the fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings—Shak.

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the disconsidered underling was in danger of becoming his master— Buchan

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scientists need to be used not as lackeys or underlingsVannevar Bush

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Subordinate likewise suggests subjection but has an entirely different flavor from underling. The term implies a being in subjection to the will or wishes of another but seldom carries a suggestion of disdain and usually expresses no more than relative position in a hierarchy
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his tendency to meddle and give orders to Welles and his subordinates annoyed Welles— Beale

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marked in the eyes of his young subordinate a subtle light— Guy Fowler

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matters . . . talked over endlessly by . . . Captain Anthony's faithful sub- ordina tes—Conrad

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Analogous words: dependent, subject (see corresponding adjectives at SUBORDINATE)
Antonyms: superior
Contrasted words: *chief, head, master, leader

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

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  • Inferior — In*fe ri*or, a. [L., compar. of inferus that is below, underneath, the lower; akin to E. under: cf. F. inf[ e]rieur. See {Under}.] [1913 Webster] 1. Lower in place, rank, value, excellence, etc.; less important or valuable; subordinate;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • inferior — INFERIÓR, OÁRĂ, inferiori, oare, adj. 1. Care este aşezat dedesubt sau mai jos. ♦ (Despre ape curgătoare sau despre regiuni de pe cursul lor) Situat mai aproape de vărsare decât de izvor. 2. Care este din punct de vedere numeric mai mic decât… …   Dicționar Român

  • inferior — in·fe·ri·or adj: of lower status, rank, or priority Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996. inferior I …   Law dictionary

  • inferior — adjetivo 1. Que está en el espacio debajo de otra cosa o más bajo que ella: Lo encontró en el estante inferior. En las plantas inferiores han puesto las rebajas. labio inferior. 2. Que es menor que otra cosa en calidad o cantidad: Su puntuación… …   Diccionario Salamanca de la Lengua Española

  • inferior — (Del lat. inferĭor, ōris). 1. adj. Que está debajo de algo o más bajo que ello. 2. Que es menos que algo en calidad o en cantidad. 3. Dicho de una persona: Sujeta o subordinada a otra. U. t. c. s.) 4. Biol. Se dice de los seres vivos de… …   Diccionario de la lengua española

  • inferior — is not a true comparative (like lower, for example) and is followed by to, not than: • When we are together there s no competition; neither of us feels better than or inferior to the other J. Dawson, 1990. When used attributively (before a noun) …   Modern English usage

  • inferior — [adj1] less in rank, importance back seat*, bottom, bottom rung*, entry level, junior, less, lesser, lower, menial, minor, minus, nether, peon, second, secondary, second banana*, second fiddle*, second string*, smaller, subjacent, subordinate,… …   New thesaurus

  • Inferior — In*fe ri*or, n. A person lower in station, rank, intellect, etc., than another. [1913 Webster] A great person gets more by obliging his inferior than by disdaining him. South. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Inferior — (lat. für „unterer“ oder „unten gelegen“ oder auch „unterentwickelt“) kann bedeuten bzw. bezeichnen: minderwertig oder unterlegen, siehe Inferiorität in der Mikroökonomie Güter aus dem Basisbedarf bzw. geringwertige Güter; siehe inferiores Gut in …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • inferior — 1. situado debajo o en una posición más baja que un determinado punto de referencia, como los pies en posición inferior a la de las piernas. 2. de escasa calidad o valor. Diccionario Mosby Medicina, Enfermería y Ciencias de la Salud, Ediciones… …   Diccionario médico