comparison(redirected from comparisons)
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Related to comparisons: Similes
(there's) no comparison
This person or thing is clearly and inarguably better than any other. This place serves the best pizza in town—no comparison! She might not be the most sociable person around, but when it comes to knowledge of classic literature, there's no comparison.
pale by comparison
To seem less impressive when compared to someone or something else. All of my siblings are surgeons, so my art career always pales by comparison.
pale in comparison
To be or seem less important, impressive, or otherwise deficient when compared to someone or something else. The film was enjoyable, but it pales in comparison to the original. Though that issue is indeed serious, it pales in comparison with the threat of drug abuse that is tearing the country apart.
When judged against something else. The film was enjoyable, but it pales by comparison to the 1975 original.
When judged against something else. Typically used in the phrase "pales in comparison." The film was enjoyable, but it pales in comparison to the 1975 original. Her writing is so strong that I feel like mine just pales in comparison.
See also: comparison
Unequalled or peerless. I'm not surprised that Molly won a full scholarship to that prestigious university—her intelligence is beyond comparison.
pale by comparisonand pale in comparison
Fig. to appear to be deficient in comparison to something else. My work pales by comparison with yours. You are a real pro.
Also, without comparison or beyond compare . Too superior to be compared, unrivaled, as in This view of the mountains is beyond comparison, or That bakery is without comparison. The first term, more common today than the much older variants, was first recorded in 1871. Without comparison goes back to 1340, and without compare to 1621.
by comˈparison(written) used especially at the beginning of a sentence when the next thing that is mentioned is compared with something in the previous sentence: By comparison, expenditure on education increased last year.
by/in comparison (with somebody/something)when compared with somebody/something: The second half of the game was dull by comparison with the first. ♢ The tallest buildings in London are small in comparison with New York’s skyscrapers.
there’s no comˈparisonused when comparing two people or things to emphasize that one is much better, etc: ‘Who is the better player, Tom or Anna?’ ‘Anna is — there’s no comparison.’
comparisons are odious
To draw an analogy is offensive; one cannot compare apples and oranges fairly. This term was already so well known in Shakespeare’s time that he was able to make a pun—more accurately a malapropism—on it and be sure it would be perfectly understood (“Comparisons are odorous,” says Dogberry in Much Ado about Nothing, 3.5). The earliest reference recorded is from about 1430, and there are equivalents in French, Italian, and numerous other languages.
See also: comparison