Definition of exceed in English:

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Pronunciation: /ɪkˈsiːd/
Pronunciation: /ɛkˈsiːd/


[with object]
1Be greater in number or size than (a quantity, number, or other measurable thing): production costs have exceeded £60,000
More example sentences
  • Duties on quantities exceeding the quotas will be gradually reduced until their full lifting in 2006-2007.
  • In the most populated areas of California, the cost of living far exceeds the national average.
  • The OPEC nations habitually cheat on each other by exceeding the production quotas that they agree to.
1.1Go beyond what is allowed or stipulated by (a set limit): the Tribunal’s decision clearly exceeds its powers under the statute
More example sentences
  • The noise levels are monitored, he said, and the range never exceeded the limits allowed in the Noise Pollution Regulations.
  • For this reason, drivers are allowed to exceed the speed limit on such calls.
  • It is within the Prime Minister's powers to exceed the speed limit, if she is on urgent public business.
be more than, be greater than, be over, run over, go over, go beyond, overshoot, overreach, pass, top
1.2Be better than; surpass: economic growth exceeded expectations this year
More example sentences
  • Walton expects economic growth to exceed the MPC's base case, due to buoyant exports and investment.
  • Year after year, economic and income growth exceeded prevailing, modest expectations.
  • This is for the first time in close to a decade that that economic growth has exceeded the 8 per cent mark.
surpass, outdo, outstrip, outshine, outclass, transcend, top, cap, beat, be greater than, be superior to, be better than, go one better than, better, pass, eclipse, overshadow, put in the shade, put to shame
informal best, leave standing, be head and shoulders above, be a cut above
archaic extinguish, outrival, outvie



Example sentences
  • The summer of 1998, for example, saw a record number of ozone exceedances averaged over New England.
  • In general, compliance with the remaining parameters was high with only isolated exceedances reported.
  • Under the "risk-based" approach, however, the developer could simply purchase the carrying capacity exceedance.


Late Middle English (in the sense 'go over a boundary or specified point'): from Old French exceder, from Latin excedere, from ex- 'out' + cedere 'go'.

  • cede from early 16th century:

    Cede is from French céder or Latin cedere ‘to yield, give way, go’. Cedere is a rich source of English words including abscess (mid 16th century) ‘going away’ (of the infection when it bursts); access [Middle English] ‘go to’; ancestor (Middle English) someone who went ante ‘before’; antecedent (Late Middle English) from the same base as ancestor; cease (Middle English); concede (Late Middle English) to give way completely; decease (Middle English) ‘go away’; exceed (Late Middle English) to go beyond a boundary; intercede (late 16th century) go between; predecessor (Late Middle English) one who went away before; proceed (Late Middle English) to go forward; recede (Late Middle English) ‘go back’; and succeed (Late Middle English) ‘come close after’.

Words that rhyme with exceed

accede, bead, Bede, bleed, breed, cede, concede, creed, deed, Eid, feed, Gide, God speed, greed, he'd, heed, impede, interbreed, intercede, Jamshid, knead, lead, mead, Mede, meed, misdeed, mislead, misread, need, plead, proceed, read, rede, reed, Reid, retrocede, screed, secede, seed, she'd, speed, stampede, steed, succeed, supersede, Swede, tweed, weak-kneed, we'd, weed

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: ex¦ceed

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