worse

Worse means "not as good as something else" or "changed negatively," like a sore throat that is getting worse, meaning it hurts more now.

Worse comes from the Old Saxon word werran or "to entangle, compound." To compound is to add to, so if troubles, complication, or anything else that entangles are added to a situation, it will get worse. Remember that worse is used to compare two things, such as "now" and "before," while worst compares three or more things. You might use worse than yesterday, but this doesn't make it the worst cold you ever had.

Definitions of worse
  1. adjective
    (comparative of `bad') inferior to another in quality or condition or desirability
    “this road is worse than the first one we took”
    “the road is in worse shape than it was”
    “she was accused of worse things than cheating and lying”
    Synonyms:
    worsened
    made or become worse; impaired
    see moresee less
    Antonyms:
    better
    (comparative of `good') superior to another (of the same class or set or kind) in excellence or quality or desirability or suitability; more highly skilled than another
    amended
    modified for the better
    finer
    (comparative of `fine') greater in quality or excellence
    improved
    become or made better in quality
    show more antonyms...
  2. adjective
    changed for the worse in health or fitness
    “I feel worse today”
    “her cold is worse
    synonyms: worsened
    see moresee less
    Antonyms:
    better
    (comparative of `good') changed for the better in health or fitness
    fitter, healthier
    improved in health or physical condition
    show more antonyms...
  3. adverb
    (comparative of `ill') in a less effective or successful or desirable manner
    “he did worse on the second exam”
  4. noun
    something inferior in quality or condition or effect
    “for better or for worse
    “accused of cheating and lying and worse
    see moresee less
    type of:
    bad, badness
    that which is below standard or expectations as of ethics or decency
Word Family
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