worst1 [wə:st US wə:rst] adj [the superlative of bad]
[: Old English; Origin: wierresta, wyrsta]
1.) [only before noun]
worse than anything or anyone else
This is the worst recession for fifty years.
My worst fear was that we would run out of food.
What is the worst possible thing that can happen?
2.) be your own worst enemy
to cause a lot of problems for yourself because of your own behaviour
3.) come off worst
to lose a fight or argument
worst 2
worst2 n
1.) the worst
the person or thing that is worse than all others
→↑the best worst (that)
This year's harvest is the worst that people can remember.
Last year was by far the worst (=much worse than any other) for road accidents.
I think the worst is over now.
The worst of it is (=the worst part of the situation is) , I can't tell anyone what's happening.
at its/his etc worst
You saw the garden at its worst, I'm afraid (=when it is worse than any other time) .
2.) the worst of sth
most of something, or the most unpleasant or difficult part of it
The worst of the storm seemed to be over.
3.) expect/fear the worst
to expect or fear that something will not be successful or something bad will happen
When it got so late and they still weren't home, I began to fear the worst.
4.) get/have the worst of it
spoken to lose a fight or argument
5.) at (the) worst
if things are as bad as they can be
Choosing the right software can be time-consuming at best and confusing or frustrating at worst .
6.) do your/his/her/their worst
used to say that someone can try to harm you but they will not be able to
They can do their worst now, because I'm leaving in three weeks.
7.) if the worst comes to the worst
especially BrE if worst comes to worst especially AmE
if the situation develops in the worst possible way
If the worst comes to the worst, we'll sell the car.
worst 3
worst3 adv [the superlative of badly]
1.) most badly
Aid is being sent to areas that have been worst affected by the earthquake.
the worst-dressed man in the office
2.) worst of all
used to say what is the worst part of a situation
She had no office of her own and, worst of all, she didn't even have her own computer.

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.

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