Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English


English definition of “classic”


noun (HIGH QUALITY)    /ˈklæs.ɪk/
B2 [C] a piece of writing, a musical recording , or a film that is well known and of a high standard and lasting value : Jane Austen's " Pride and Prejudice " is a classic of English literature . Many of the Rolling Stones ' records have become rock classics.Types of film, play, book etc. the classics [plural] the most famous works of literature : I spent my childhood reading the classics.Literature in general Grammar:Classic or classical?Grammar:Classic: adjectiveClassic means ‘high quality’. In particular, we use it to mean something that is valued because it has a traditional style:Grammar:Classic: nounWe can use a classic and the classics to refer to the greatest and most famous works of literature from the past:Grammar:Classical: adjectiveWe use classical to refer to the culture of the past and to art forms which belong to a long formal tradition:
(Definition of classic noun (HIGH QUALITY) from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
Focus on the pronunciation of classic

Definitions of “classic” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day


a good knowledge of something, or the fact that you know it so well

Word of the Day


Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More