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TOEFL BNC: 1251 COCA: 2725

latter

latter /ˈlætɚ/ adjective
latter
/ˈlætɚ/
adjective
Learner's definition of LATTER
always used before a noun
: coming or happening near the end of a process, activity, series, life, etc. : later较后的;后期的

the latter

: the second one of two things or people that have been mentioned(两者中的)后者
: the last thing or person mentioned最后提及的事物(或人)
: the thing or person that has just been mentioned刚提及的事物(或人)
compare the former at former
TOEFL BNC: 1251 COCA: 2725

latter

adjective

lat·​ter ˈla-tər How to pronounce latter (audio)
1
a
: belonging to a subsequent time or period : more recent
the latter stages of growth
b
: of or relating to the end
in their latter days
c
: recent, present
affected by latter calamities
2
: of, relating to, or being the second of two groups or things or the last of several groups or things referred to
of ham and beef the latter meat is cheaper today
of ham and beef the latter is cheaper today

Did you know?

Can latter be used of more than two?

There is some controversy afoot regarding the use of latter, particularly regarding its use to refer to items in a series. Many commentators insist that latter can only be used of a series that consists of two:

We have a chicken entree and a vegetarian entree: do you prefer the former or the latter?

When presented with a series of three or more, they say, anyone wishing to highlight the last item in the series should use last and not latter:

We had soup, fish, and dessert, and the last was uninspiring.

But our evidence shows that latter is used to refer to the last in a series regardless of number:

After Ethel's action at Oxford, the ultimate sacrifice that symbolizes her self-discipline, the focus moves away to other members of her family for the latter third of the novel...
— Melissa Schaub, Studies in the Novel, Spring 2007

...I am getting crosser and snappier and sadder every minute straining and struggling to type and to read and to draw (the latter is the easiest).
— James Thurber, letter, 9 June 1939

...bee not over-power'd with policie, nor with enforcement of arguments, nor with the approach of Souldiers, and Troopers; the two first may seeme to perswade you, the latter may terrifie you into an everlasting undoing...
— A.L., To all the honest, wise, and grave-citizens of London, but more especially to all those that challenge an interest in the Common-Hall, 1648

This use is common enough that most modern dictionaries make mention of it in their definitions for latter—and indeed they should, since our evidence for this particular use is several hundred years old. Despite this evidence, however, there are still those who object to its use; if you are concerned about such things, use last to refer to the last item in a series of three or more.

Example Sentences

… a fundamental trade-off between capitalist prosperity and economic security. As a nation we have chosen to have less of the former in order to have more of the latter. David A. Stockman, Newsweek, 28 Apr. 1986 … though her bibliography includes Hecht, Snyder, and Daiches, she omits the latter's first name … DeLancey Ferguson, Modern Language Notes, February 1957 the latter stages of the process We'll go in the latter half of the year. In his latter years he became blind.
Recent Examples on the Web Traditionally, every summer, the monarch hosts three of these fêtes at Buckingham Palace, and one at the Palace of Holyroodhouse during Holyrood Week—the latter of which, per the royal family's website, hosts 8,000 guests. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, 11 Sep. 2022 Nowadays, my weekday breakfast ritual alternates between oatmeal and chia pudding—the former on work-from-home days, the latter on office days. Kate Kassin, Bon Appétit, 10 Sep. 2022 Grier and Ray, the latter of whom amassed 3,207 penalty minutes over his 900-game career, did not tangle that night. Kevin Paul Dupont, BostonGlobe.com, 10 Sep. 2022 For example, people with dry skin — or those looking for a dewy finish — may opt for a liquid or cream blush, the latter of which are known for their emollient properties. Lauren Dana Ellman, Allure, 10 Sep. 2022 William and Kate are now the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and are expected to inherit the titles Prince and Princess of Wales, the latter of which hasn’t been used since the death of Princess Diana. Paige Mcglauflin, Fortune, 9 Sep. 2022 Justice Samuel Alito belongs to the latter category. Margaret Talbot, The New Yorker, 28 Aug. 2022 One that falls in that latter category is a simulation of a high stakes duel, pitting the listener up against Justin Thomas over a sequence of putts of varying distances on Sunday at the Masters. Mike Dojc, Forbes, 9 Aug. 2022 In this latter category, one of the cases was dismissed, another was settled and a third is ongoing. Tim Stelloh, NBC News, 6 Aug. 2022 See More

Word History

Etymology

Middle English, from Old English lætra, comparative of læt late

First Known Use

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of latter was before the 12th century
TOEFL BNC: 1251 COCA: 2725
TOEFL BNC: 1251 COCA: 2725
Mr. Ng 不推薦使用 Google翻譯
^_^: Translate en To zh-TW

latter
---------
後者

0_0: Translations of latter
  • # a.
    近來的: latter, recent
    下: inferior, latter, lower, next

0_0: Definitions of latter
  • # adjective.
    - situated or occurring nearer to the end of something than to the beginning.
    * the latter half of 1989
    - denoting the second or second mentioned of two people or things.
    * the Russians could advance into either Germany or Austria—they chose the latter option

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