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Meaning of “extreme” in the English Dictionary

"extreme" in British English

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extremeadjective

uk   /ɪkˈstriːm/  us   /ɪkˈstriːm/
  • extreme adjective (BAD)

B2 very severe or bad: extreme weather conditions In extreme cases, the disease can lead to blindness.

extremenoun [C]

uk   /ɪkˈstriːm/  us   /ɪkˈstriːm/
the largest possible amount or degree of something: I've never witnessed such extremes of wealth and poverty. Most people I know work fairly hard but she takes it to extremes.
in the extreme
used for emphasis; extremely: Some of the scenes were unpleasant in the extreme.
a situation, feeling, etc. that is the opposite or very different from another one: My moods seem to go from one extreme to another (= my moods often change from very bad to very good).
(Definition of extreme from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"extreme" in American English

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extremeadjective

 us   /ɪkˈstrim/
  • extreme adjective (GREAT)

very great; beyond what is usual or what might be expected: Use extreme caution, as the steps are very slippery. The extreme cold kept most people indoors.
  • extreme adjective (FURTHEST)

at the furthest point; to the greatest degree: At the extreme end of the lake there is a hunting lodge.
Extreme opinions, ideas, etc., are beyond the usual range of variety and would seem unreasonable to most people.

extremenoun [C]

 us   /ɪkˈstrim/
  • extreme noun [C] (MATH)

mathematics the first or fourth terms (= numbers or symbols) of a proportion (= a mathematical statement with a comparison of two numbers calculated by division on each side): In the proportion a/b=t/z the terms a and z are the extremes.
  • extreme noun [C] (GREAT DEGREE)

the greatest possible amount or degree of something: The security staff went to extremes to insure the safety of the world leaders.
(Definition of extreme from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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