From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishworseworse1 /wɜːs $ wɜːrs/ ●●●S1W2 adjective1[the comparative of bad]WORSE more unpleasant, bad, or severe → betterworse thanThe violence was worse than we expected.The traffic is much worse after five o'clock.The weather was a lot worse this year.Conditions will get worse as the winter continues.High inflation will make unemployment worse.Don’t say anything, you’ll only make matters worse.The bullying got worse and worse until finally he had to leave the school.There’s nothing worse than being robbed while you’re on holiday.The school’s not perfect, but I suppose it could be worse.2WORSEmore ill than beforeIf she’s worse in the morning, I’ll call the doctor.I was worried because he seemed to be getting worse rather than better.The tablets seemed to make him worse.3 →be none the worse for something4 →worse luck5 →somebody could do worse than do something6 →go from bad to worse7 →the worse for wearGRAMMAR: ComparativesThe comparative form of bad is worse: The problem is getting worse.✗Don’t say: The problem is getting more worse. | The problem is getting worser.COLLOCATIONSadverbsmuch/a lot/far worseConditions were much worse in rural areas.considerably/substantially worseTo make matters considerably worse, he lost his job.infinitely worse (=very much worse)My fate could have been infinitely worse.progressively/steadily worseThe violence grew progressively worse.even worseMy cooking’s even worse than yours.verbsget/become/grow worseThe recession was getting worse.make something worseGetting angry will just make things worse.phrasesworse and worseThe bullying got worse and worse.there’s nothing worse than ...There’s nothing worse than lending something and not getting it back.something could be worseCheer up – things could be worse.better or worseI wasn’t sure whether his behaviour was getting better or worse.
THESAURUSworse more unpleasant, bad, severe etc, or of a lowerstandard or qualityRecent reports indicate that the situation is getting worse.Your French is even worse than mine!inferior of a lower standard or quality than something else, or less good than someone elseTheir wines are of inferior quality.an inferior productTrying to do things on the cheap only results in an inferior service. not compare with something used to emphasize that someone or something is not nearly as good, big, or nice as someone or something elseThis recording just doesn’t compare with his early recordings.Our sales this year do not compare with last year’s outstanding results. not be in the same league informal used to emphasize that the standard of someone or something is not nearly as good as someone or something elseHe’s pretty good, but he’s not in the same league as his brother.not be a patch on something/somebody British English informal use this to emphasize that something is not nearly as good as something else, especially something that came before itThe film wasn’t a patch on the book.He’s not a patch on Tarantino as a director.
Examples from the Corpus
worse• Phillips' problems may be even worse.• This could only serve to make things worse.• I really don't think the situation could be any worse.• I tried to fix the computer myself, but that just made it worse.• a terriblescript and even worseacting• The traffic is a lot worse after five o'clock.• The next morning, the weather was much worse, and the teamstayed at basecamp.• The welfare system, runs this view, makes things worse because it discourages people from working and rewardsundesirablebehaviour.• I knew that there is no deathworse for an eagle than death at the beaks of hooded crows.• Things could be worse for the McNemars.• Conditions in the prison were worse than anything I had seen before.• Duncan's handwriting is even worse than his sister's.• JackButler really didn't like the idea that he had been nobbled and worse than that, nobbled by a girl.• Stop it Gary, you're worse than the kids!• His injuries were worse than they would have been if he had been wearing a seatbelt.worse than• The damage to the house is worse than I expected.• My knee feels worse than it did yesterday.getting worse• I told him that the weather was horrendous on Tiree also, with cloud and heavyrain, and getting worse.• In some cases indicators of deprivation are getting worse.• So it just kept getting worse.• The report said that the goal of naturalquiet had not been achieved and that aircraftnoise was getting worse.• The weather was certainly getting worse.• And he'd been getting worse, no doubt about that.• Today it has been worse and it is getting worse now.• I though when they won the league they were bad but it is getting worse with each passing day.worseworse2 ●●●S3W2 adverb [the comparative of badly]WORSEin a more severe or serious way than before → betterworse thanBy lunch time it was raining worse than ever.[sentence adverb]The business could become less profitable or, even worse, could close down.Suppose Rose, or worse still, Peter had seen the photograph?
Examples from the Corpus
worse• No one singsworse than I do.• My foothurts even worse today.or worse still• Back to the world's pity, or worse still, contempt.• He had become something other, or worse still, perhaps he had always been.• He may come round, or worse still, spill some of the facts in his sleep or something like that.worseworse3 noun [uncountable]1WORSEsomething worse → betterWe thought the situation was bad, but worse was to follow.2 →take a turn for the worse