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1085. The superlative expresses either the highest degree of a quality (the relative superlative: σοφώτατος ἀνήρ the wisest man) or a very high degree of a quality (the absolute superlative, which does not take the article: ἀνὴρ σοφώτατος a very wise man). The relative superlative is followed by the genitive of the person or thing surpassed (1315, 1434). On the agreement, see 1050.

a. The class to which an individual, marked by the superlative, belongs, may be designated by a genitive of the divided whole (1315): σοφώτατος τῶν Ἑλλήνων the wisest of the Greeks. So often by πάντων: πάντων ἀνθρώπων ἀγνωμονέστατοι the most senseless of all men Lyc. 54. On the superlative with ἄλλων, see 1434.

b. With two the comparative exhausts all the degrees of comparison: hence πρότερος and πρῶτος, ὕστερος and ὕστατος, ἑκάτερος each of two, and ἕκαστος each of several, are carefully to be distinguished.

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