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The Devil's Dictionary:    

Definition of Absolute

  ABSOLUTE   adjective
Independent, irresponsible.  An absolute monarchy is one in which the sovereign does as he pleases so long as he pleases the assassins.  Not many absolute monarchies are left, most of them having been replaced by limited monarchies, where the sovereign's power for evil (and for good) is greatly curtailed, and by republics, which are governed by chance.

Devil's Dictionarydefinition from:
The Devil's Dictionary
by Ambrose Bierce, 1911

Regular definition:
?Šbs?lu:t adj. & n. --adj. 1 complete, utter, perfect (an absolute fool; absolute bliss). 2 unconditional, unlimited (absolute authority). 3 despotic; ruling arbitrarily or with unrestricted power (an absolute monarch). 4 (of a standard or other concept) universally valid; not admitting exceptions; not relative or comparative. 5 Gram. a (of a construction) syntactically independent of the rest of the sentence, as in dinner being over, we left the table; let us toss for it, loser to pay. b (of an adjective or transitive verb) used or usable without an expressed noun or object (e.g. the deaf, guns kill). 6 (of a legal decree etc.) final. --n. Philos. 1 a value, standard, etc., which is objective and universally valid, not subjective or relative. 2 (prec. by the) a Philos. that which can exist without being related to anything else. b Theol. ultimate reality; God. °absolute alcohol Chem. ethanol free from water or other impurities. absolute magnitude the magnitude, i.e. brightness, of a celestial body as seen at a standard distance of 10 parsecs (opp. apparent magnitude). absolute majority 1 a majority over all others combined. 2 more than half. absolute pitch Mus. 1 the ability to recognize the pitch of a note or produce any given note. 2 a fixed standard of pitch defined by the rate of vibration. absolute temperature one measured from absolute zero. absolute zero a theoretical lowest possible temperature, at which the particles whose motion constitutes heat would be minimal, calculated as -273.15 █C (or 0 █K). °°absoluteness n. [ME f. L absolutus past part.: see ABSOLVE]

Last updated: 9/3/2011 12:48:30