Definition of “above” - English Dictionary

“above” in British English

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aboveadverb, preposition

uk /əˈbʌv/ us /əˈbʌv/

above adverb, preposition (HIGHER POSITION)

A1 in or to a higher position than something else:

There's a mirror above the sink.
He waved the letter excitedly above his head.
She's rented a room above a shop.
Her name comes above mine on the list.
The helicopter was hovering above the building.
It's on the shelf just above your head.
A crack had started to appear just above the light on the ceiling.

More examples

  • There's a mirror above the sink.
  • The moon rose slowly above the horizon.
  • He had a cut an inch long above his left eye.
  • The helicopter was hovering above the building.
  • The castle is built on a hill that rises above the town.

above adverb, preposition (MORE)

A2 more than an amount or level:

It says on the box it's for children aged three and above.
Rates of pay are above average.
Temperatures rarely rise above zero in winter.
She values her job above her family.
They value their freedom above (and beyond) all else.
above all

B1 most importantly:

Above all, I'd like to thank my family.
Above all, I'd say I value kindness.

More examples

  • Temperatures rarely rise above zero in winter.
  • I value her friendship above anything else.
  • The results are well above what we expected.
  • The top of Mount Everest is 8,848 m above sea level.
  • The temperature was above normal for the time of year.

above adverb, preposition (RANK)

in a more important or advanced position than someone else:

Sally's a grade above me.

More examples

  • A captain ranks above a lieutenant.
  • A major-general is above a brigadier in the British army.
  • Melanie's husband worked above mine in the Quality Control Department.
  • The old man resented having someone above him telling him what to do.
  • You don't get your own office here until you're a manager or above.

aboveadverb, adjective

uk /əˈbʌv/ us /əˈbʌv/

above adverb, adjective (ON PAGE)

B1 When used in a piece of writing, "above" means higher on the page, or on a previous page:

Please send the articles to the address given above.
The letter was sent to the above address.
the above

all the people or things listed earlier:

All of the above should be invited.
Once we've finished all of the above we can start on the next project.

More examples

  • Write to the above address, enclosing an sae.
  • You can contact me on the above phone number.
  • Applications should be sent to the above address.
  • Study the diagram above and then answer the questions.
  • To the best of my knowledge, the above information is accurate.

Thesaurus: synonyms and related words

Above & over

You can also find related words, phrases, and synonyms in the topics:

(Definition of “above” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

“above” in American English

See all translations

aboveadverb, preposition

us /əˈbʌv/

higher than, more than, or at a level greater than:

The helicopter was hovering above the building.
Temperatures here rarely rise above freezing in winter.
Our wages are above average.
I could hardly hear him above the blare of the music.

In writing, above can mean as stated higher up on this page or on a previous page:

Refer to the diagram shown above.

To be above doing something is to consider yourself too important or too moral to do it:

He’s not above lying to protect himself.

Idiom(s)

aboveplural noun

us /əˈbʌv/

those mentioned earlier:

All of the above are to be included.

(Definition of “above” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)