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Old / New Testament Greek Lexical Dictionary

Entry for Strong's #3123 - μᾶλλον

Word Origin
neuter of the comparative of the same as (3122)
Parts of Speech
Word Definition [ Thayer | Strong | Mounce ]
Thayer's Definition
  1. more, to a greater degree, rather
    1. much, by far
    2. rather, sooner
    3. more willingly, more readily, sooner
Frequency Lists  [ Book | Word | Parsing ]
Verse Results
KJV (83) NAS (78) HCS (73)
Matthew 9
Mark 6
Luke 6
John 4
Acts 7
Romans 8
1 Corinthians 9
2 Corinthians 8
Galatians 2
Ephesians 3
Philippians 5
1 Thessalonians 2
1 Timothy 2
2 Timothy 1
Philemon 2
Hebrews 6
2 Peter 1
Matthew 9
Mark 5
Luke 5
John 4
Acts 6
Romans 8
1 Corinthians 9
2 Corinthians 8
Galatians 1
Ephesians 3
Philippians 4
1 Thessalonians 2
1 Timothy 2
2 Timothy 1
Philemon 2
Hebrews 6
2 Peter 1
Matthew 9
Mark 3
Luke 5
John 4
Acts 7
Romans 8
1 Corinthians 9
2 Corinthians 6
Galatians 2
Ephesians 3
Philippians 5
1 Thessalonians 2
1 Timothy 2
2 Timothy 1
Philemon 2
Hebrews 5
ADV 82
ADV 79
ADV 83
ADV 78
ADV 88

Liddell-Scott-Jones Definitions

μᾶλλον, Adv. Comp. of μάλα, v. cross μάλα 11.


[ μᾰλᾰ; but Hom. sts. uses the ult. long before λ, Il. 3.214, 4.379; before μ, 10.172 ],

Adv. very, exceedingly, prefixed or subjoined to Adjectives, Verbs, and Adverbs:

1. strengthening the word with which it stands, with Adjs., in Hom. most freq., μάλα πολλά very many, Od. 1.1; μ. πᾶσα, μ. πάντα, every one, all together, Il. 13.741, Od. 2.306, etc.; μάλ' ἀσκηθής all unhurt, 5.26; ἀβληχρὸς μ. τοῖος quite gentle, 11.135; σαρδάνιον μ. τοῖον a quite sardonic smile, 20.302; μάλα μυρίοι 15.556, 16.121, etc.; ἐμέο πρότερος μ. actually before me, Il. 10.124; later, μ. φιλόσοφοι, πλάτανος μάλ' ἀμφιλαφής, etc., Pl. Prm. 126b, Phdr. 230b, etc.: strengthd., μ. δὴ πρεσβύτης very old, X. Cyr. 8.7.1; μ. γέ τινες ὀλίγοι Pl. R. 531e. with Advs., πάγχυ μ., μ. πάγχυ, quite utterly, Il. 12.165, 14.143; πάνυ μ. Pl. Phd. 80c; εὖ μ. right well, Od. 22.190, Pl. Phd. 92d, etc.; μάλα.. εὖ Od. 23.175, cf. Pl. Tht. 156a; μάλ' αὐτίκα (v. αὐτίκα) ; μάλ' αἰεί for ever and aye, Il. 13.557, 23.717; ἄχρι μ. κνέφαος until quite dark, Od. 18.370; μάλ' ὧδε just in this way, 6.258; μ. διαμπερές right through, Il. 20.362; μ. μόλις (v. μόλις); to express repeated action, μάλ' αὖθις A. Ag. 1345, Ch. 654; μάλ' αὖ S. El. 1410, etc.; μ. alone, ἔα, ἔα μ. A. Ch. 870; οἲ μ. καὶ τόδ' ἀλγῶ Id. Pers. 1045 (lyr.); εἶα μ. Ar. Pax 460s q. (so ἄλλος πύργος.., καὶ ἕτερος μ. ἐπὶ τούτῳ Hdt. 1.181, cf. 7.186): freq. after καί, αὗταί σ' ὁδηγήσουσι καὶ μάλ' ἀσμένως A. Pr. 728, cf. Ch. 879: with neg., μάλ' οὐ, μάλ' οὔ πως, Il. 2.241, Od. 5.103; οὐ μ. Hdt. 1.93, 2.37, S. Ph. 676 (lyr.). with Verbs, μήτ' ἄρ με μάλ' αἴνεε Il. 10.249; μ. τ' ἔκλυον αὐτοῦ 1.218; ἡ δὲ μάλ' ἡνιόχευεν drove carefully, Od. 6.319; μ... προπέμπει in earnest, A. Th. 915 (lyr.), cf. Eu. 368 (lyr.); καὶ μ. δοκοῦντας φρονίμους εἶναι X. Cyr. 6.1.36; μ. πολιορκούμενοι Id. HG 7.1.25.

2. strengthening an assertion, νῦν σε μ. χρὴ αἰχμητὴν ἔμεναι, i.e. now or never, Il. 16.492; τῷ κε μάλ' ἤ κεν μεῖνε.. then doubtless he would have stayed, Od. 4.733; σοὶ δὲ μάλ' ἕψομ' ἐγώ yes indeed.., Il. 10.108; ἀλλὰ μάλ' ὤφελλες why plainly.., Od. 4.472: freq. with another word, as ἦ μ. δή.. now in very truth, Il. 5.422, etc.; ἦ δή που μ. 21.583; freq. ἦ μ. (without δή) 3.204, etc.

3. in Hom. sts. after εἰ, as εἰ μ. μιν χόλος ἵκοι if wrath come on him ever so much, Il. 17.399, cf. Od. 5.485, al.; καὶ εἰ μ. τις πολεμίζοι Il. 9.318; also μ. περ c. part., μ. περ μεμαώς though desiring never so much, 13.317, cf. 14.58, 17.710, al.; καὶ μ. περ 1.217, cf. 17.571; καὶ εὐρέα περ μάλ' ἐόντα Od. 18.385.

4. in Att. freq. in answers, yes, certainly, μ. γε Pl. R. 555d, 564e, etc.; μ. τοι X. Mem. 1.2.46; καὶ μ. Pl. Phdr. 258c; καὶ μ. γε Id. Tht. 148c, etc.; καὶ μ. δή ib. 177a; καὶ μ. ἐπαύσατο certainly it stopped, Id. Smp. 189a, etc. II Comp. μᾶλλον [ by nature, Hdn.Gr. 2.932 ], Ion. μάλιον [] only in Tyrt. 12.6, cf. An.Ox. 2.240; late Dor. μαλλότερον Pempel. ap. Stob. 4.25.52: more, rather, Il. 5.231, Od. 1.351, al.: mostly folld. by , but in Prose also by a gen., μ. τοῦ ξυμφέροντος more than is expedient, Antipho 5.1; μ. τοῦ δέοντος Pl. Grg. 487b, X. Mem. 4.3.8 (sts. expressed by μᾶλλον alone, Pl. Phd. 63d); οὐπώποτ' ἔργου μ. εἱλόμην λόγους E. Fr. 394; παντὸς μ. most assuredly, Pl. Lg. 715d (v. infr. 8); in Id. Ap. 36d, οὐκ ἔσθ' ὅτι μ. πρέπει οὕτως, ὡς.., ὡς is prob. = (v. ὡς): denoting a constant increase, more and more, sts. doubled, μ. μ. E. IT 1406, Ar. Ra. 1001 (lyr.), Alex. 29: in positive sense, exceedingly, κηρόθι μ. Il. 9.300, Od. 15.370, al.:


1 freq. strengthened by other words, πολὺ μ. Il. 9.700, etc.; ἔτι μ. 14.97, al.; μ. ἔτ' ἢ τὸ πάροιθεν Od. 1.322; καὶ μ. Il. 8.470; καὶ μ. ἔτι Od. 18.22; ἔτι καὶ μ. Pi. P. 10.57; ἔτι καὶ πολὺ μ. Il. 23.386, 429, Hes. Th. 428; ἐπὶ μ. Hdt. 3.104; ἔτι ἐπὶ μ. Id. 1.94; πολλῷ μ. Pl. Phd. 80e, 1 Corinthians 12:22 : also modified, μᾶλλόν τι somewhat more, μ. τι περιημέκτεε Hdt. 1.114, cf. 50, etc.; μ. ἤδη προσδεχομένου Th. 8.71.

2. sts. with a second Comp., ῥηΐτεροι μ. Il. 24.243, cf. Hdt. 1.32, A. Th. 673, Supp. 279, S. Ant. 1210, E. El. 222, Pl. Phd. 79e, Isa 4.14 (s.v.l.), Arist. Top. 116b24.

3. μᾶλλον δέ much more.., or rather.., to correct a statement already made, ὁ δεσπότης πέπραγεν εὐτυχέστατα, μ. δ' ὁ Πλοῦτος αὐτός Ar. Pl. 634; πολλοί, μ. δὲ πάντες D. 18.65, cf. Pl. Smp. 173e; so ἢ μ. Corn. ND 20, Simp. in Ph. 25.16; οὐχὶ μ. ἤ.. not so, but rather so.., Th. 2.87.

4. μ. δὲ καὶ ἡσυχαίτερα more or less violent, Id. 3.82.

5. οὐδὲν μ. none the more, ib. 79; οὐδέν τι μ. Pl. Phd. 87d; μηδέν τι μ. ἤ.. S. Aj. 280.

6. μ. ἤ.. folld. by οὐ in comparisons, where preference implies rejection or denial, πόλιν ὅλην διαφθεῖραι μᾶλλον ἤ οὐ τοὺς αἰτίους Th. 3.36: preceded by another neg., Hdt. 4.118, 5.94, 7.16. γ, etc.: by an interrog. which conveys a neg. force, τίδεῖ.. μᾶλλον, ἤ οὐ..; X. HG 6.3.15.

7. τὸ μ. καὶ ἧττον, a form of argument, a fortiori, Arist. Rh. 1397b12.

8. παντὸς μ., v. πᾶς 111.4.

III Sup. μάλιστα most of all, above all, Hom., etc.; πᾶσι, μάλιστα δ' ἐμοί Od. 21.353; μ. μὲν.., ἔπειτα or ἔπειτα δέ.., first and above all.., next.., S. OT 647, cf. Ph. 1285; μ. μὲν.., δεύτερον δὲ.. Isaiah 2:20; μ. μὲν.., εἰ δὲ μὴ.. Hdt. 8.22, Th. 1.40, Pl. R. 590d, D. 20.25, etc.; τοῦτο δ' ἐστὶ μ. μὲν θάνατος, εἰ δὲ μή, πάντα τὰ ὄντα ἀφελέσθαι Id. 21.152; μάλιστα μὲν.., μᾶλλον μέντοι.. Pl. Smp. 180b; μάλιστα.., εἰ μὴ δ'.. S. Ph. 617; δοκέων μιν μ. ταύτης ἂν πείθεσθαι certainly, Hdt. 3.53; τί μ.; what precisely ? Pl. Grg. 448d, cf. Men. 80b, Smp. 218c: c. gen. partit., μ. πάντων Hdt. 2.37, Pl. Prt. 327a, cf. Th. 4.86; τὸ μ. πάντων the supreme reality, Plot. 5.5.11; τὸ μ. εἶναι the highest degree of being, Id. 6.2.7.

1 strengthd., ὡς μ. certainly, A. Supp. 294, Pl. R. 460a, etc.; ὅσον μ. A. Pr. 524; ὅσα ἐδύνατο μ. Hdt. 1.185; ὡς δύναμαι μ. Pl. R. 367b; ὡς οἷόν τε μ. Id. Grg. 510b; εἰς ὅσον ἀνθρώπῳ δυνατὸν μ. Id. Phdr. 277a; ὅτι μ. δύνασαι Id. Sph. 239b; μακρῷ μ. Hdt. 1.171; πολλῷ μ. Paus. 1.42.3; παντὸς μ. D.H. 3.35, etc.

2. with the Art., ἐς τὰ μ. in the highest degree, Hdt. 1.20, 2.76, Th. 6.104, 8.6, D. 21.212: without ἐς, φίλοι τὰ μ. Hdt. 2.147, cf. Th. 1.92, D. 21.62; τά γε μ. Pl. Lg. 794d; εἰ τὰ μ. ἦσαν ἀληθεῖς if they were ever so true, D. 18.95; εἰ τὰ μ. μὴ τινές, ἀλλὰ πάντες.. if (to put an extreme case) not some, but all.., Id. 20.2; εἰ.. δοκοίη τὰ μ. Id. 18.21; ἀνὴρ δόκιμος ὁμοῖα τῷ μ. as famous as he that is most [famous], Hdt. 7.118, cf. 3.8; τοῖς μάλισθ' ὁμοίως D. 2.24. ἐν τοῖς μ. especially, as much as any, Th. 8.90, Pl. Smp. 173b, etc.: with a Sup., ἐν τοῖς μ. ὠμότατος Ael. VH 14.40; φιλτάτη καὶ ἀναγκαιοτάτη ἐν τοῖς μ. Procop. Arc. 4.

3. added to a Sup. (v. μάλα 11.2, πλεῖστον), ἔχθιστος μ., μ. φίλτατος, Il. 2.220, 24.334; μ. κῃ ἐμφερέστατα Hdt. 2.76; μ. φίλτατος E. Hipp. 1421: to a Comp. (?), μ. δὴ ὀκνηρότεροι ἐγένοντο Th. 4.55.

4. μάλιστα for μᾶλλον, μ. τῆς κόρης E. IA [1594]; μ. ἤ ἐμοί A.R. 3.91.

5. with numerals, in round numbers, about, Th. 3.29, 92, X. HG 5.2.31, etc.; πεντήκοντα μάλιστα is 49 in Th. 1.118; ἑκατοστὸς μ. 99t h, Id. 8.68; ἐς μέσον μάλιστά κῃ about the middle, Hdt. 1.191, cf. 76; ἥμισυ μ. Th. 1.93; μ. σφᾶς μεσοῦν δειπνοῦντας that they were about the middle of supper, Pl. Smp. 175c; κου μ. Hdt. 7.22; μ. πως Plb. 2.41.13.

6. in answers, most certainly, Ar. Pl. 827, etc.; μ. γε S. OT 994, Ar. Nu. 253; μ. πάντων Id. Av. 1531; πάντων μ. Pl. Grg. 453d; v. supr. 1.4. (Orig. perh. fiercely, cf. μαλερός.)

Thayer's Expanded Definition

μᾶλλον (comparitive of μάλα, very, very much) (from Homer down), adverb, more, to a greater degree; rather;

1. added to verbs and adjectives, it denotes increase, a greater quantity, a larger measure, a higher degree, more, more fully (German in höherem Grade, Maasse);

a. words defining the measure or size are joined to it in the ablative (dative): πολλῷ much, by far, Mark 10:48; Luke 18:39; Romans 5:15, 17 (in both these verses the underlying thought is, the measure of salvation for which we are indebted to Christ is far greater than that of the ruin which came from Adam; for the difference between the consequences traceable to Adam and to Christ is not only one of quality, but of quantity also; cf. Rückert, Commentary on Romans, vol. i. 281f (others (from Chrysostom to Meyer and Godet) content themselves here with a logical increase, far more certainly)); 2 Corinthians 3:9, 11; Philippians 2:12; πόσῳ how much, Luke 12:24; Romans 11:12; Philemon 1:16; Hebrews 9:14; τοσούτῳ by so much, ὅσῳ by as much (namely, μᾶλλον), Hebrews 10:25.

b. in comparison it often so stands that than before must be mentally added (A. V. the more, so much the more), as Matthew 27:24 (μᾶλλον θόρυβος γίνεται (but others refer this to 2 b. . below)); Luke 5:15 (διήρχετο μᾶλλον); John 5:18 (μᾶλλον ἐζήτουν); ; Acts 5:14; Acts 9:22; Acts 22:2; 2 Corinthians 7:7; 1 Thessalonians 4:1, 10; 2 Peter 1:10; ἔτι μᾶλλον καί μᾶλλον, Philippians 1:9; or the person or thing with which the comparison is made is evident from what precedes, as Philippians 3:4; it is added to comparatives, Mark 7:36; 2 Corinthians 7:13; πολλῷ μᾶλλον κρεῖσσον, Philippians 1:23; see (Wetstein on Philippians, the passage cited); Winers Grammar, § 35, 1 cf. 603 (561); (Buttmann, § 123, 11); to verbs that have a comparative force, μᾶλλον διαφέρειν τίνος, to be of much more value than one, Matthew 6:26. μᾶλλον , more than, Matthew 18:13; μᾶλλον with the genitive, πάντων ὑμῶν, 1 Corinthians 14:18 (Xenophon, mem. 3, 17, 1). joined to positive terms it forms a periphrasis for a comparative (cf. Winer's Grammar, § 35, 2 a.), followed by , as μακάριον, μᾶλλον for μακαριωτερον, Acts 20:35; add, 1 Corinthians 9:15; Galatians 4:27; πολλῷ μᾶλλον ἀναγκαῖά, 1 Corinthians 12:22; sometimes μᾶλλον, seems to be omitted before ; see under , 3 f. c. μᾶλλον δέ, what moreover is of greater moment (A. V. yea rather): Romans 8:34 (2 Macc. 6:23).

2. it marks the preference of one thing above another, and is to be rendered rather, sooner (German eher, vielmehr, lieber);

a. it denotes that which occurs more easily than something else, and may be rendered sooner (German eher): thus πολλῷ μᾶλλον in arguing from the less to the greater, Matthew 6:30; Romans 5:9; Hebrews 12:9 (here L T Tr WH πολι μᾶλλον); also πολύ (R G πολλῷ) μᾶλλον namely, οὐκ ἐκφευξόμεθα, i. e. much more shall we not escape (cf. Winers Grammar, p. 633 (588) note (Buttmann, § 148, 3 b.)), or even ἔνδικον μισθαποδοσίαν ληψόμεθα (Hebrews 2:2), or something similar (cf. Matthiae, § 634, 3), Hebrews 12:25. πόσῳ μᾶλλον, Matthew 7:11; Matthew 10:25; Luke 12:28; Romans 11:12, 24; Philemon 1:16. in a question, οὐ μᾶλλον; (Latinnonne potius?) (do not ... more), 1 Corinthians 9:12.

b. it is opposed to something else and does away with it; accordingly it may be rendered the rather (German vielmehr); α. after a preceding negative or prohibitive sentence: Matthew 10:6, 28; Matthew 25:9; Mark 5:26; Romans 14:13; 1 Timothy 6:2; Hebrews 12:13; μᾶλλον δέ, Ephesians 4:28; Ephesians 5:11. οὐχί μᾶλλον; (nonne potius ?) not rather etc.? 1 Corinthians 5:2; 1 Corinthians 6:7. β. so that μᾶλλον belongs to the thing which is preferred, consequently to a noun, not to a verb: John 3:19 (ἠγάπησαν μᾶλλον τό σκότος τό φῶς, i. e. when they ought to have loved the light they (hated it, and) loved the darkness, John 3:20); ; Acts 4:19; Acts 5:29; 2 Timothy 3:4 that which it opposes and sets aside must be learned from the context (cf. Winer's Grammar, § 35, 4): Mark 15:11 (namely, τόν Ἰησοῦν); Philippians 1:12 (where the meaning is, 'so far is the gospel from suffering any loss or disadvantage from my imprisonment, that the number of disciples is increased in consequence of it'). γ. by way of correction, μᾶλλον δέ, nay rather; to speak more correctly: Galatians 4:9 (Josephus, Antiquities 15, 11, 3; Aelian v. h. 2, 13 and often in secular authors; cf. Grimm, Exeg. Hdbch. on Sap., p. 176f).

c. it does not do away with that with which it is in opposition, but marks what has the preference: more willingly, more readily, sooner (German lieber), θέλω μᾶλλον and εὐδοκῶ μᾶλλον, to prefer, 1 Corinthians 14:5; 2 Corinthians 5:8 (βούλομαι μᾶλλον, Xenophon, Cyril 1, 1, 1); ζηλουν, 1 Corinthians 14:1 (μᾶλλον namely, ζηλοῦτε); χρωμαι, 1 Corinthians 7:21.

Thayer's Expanded Greek Definition, Electronic Database.
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Abbott-Smith Manual Greek Lexicon of the New Testament

μάλα ,


[in LXX for H61, 1 Kings 1:43, Da LXX Daniel 10:21, al.; compar. for מ , Numbers 13:32 (31), al.; μᾶλλον ἠ (מ ), Genesis 19:9, al.; superlat., 2 Maccabees 8:7, 4 Maccabees 4:22; 4 Maccabees 12:9; 4 Maccabees 15:4;]

I. Pos., very, very much, exceedingly (cl.; LXX ut supr.; in NT its place is taken by λίαν , σφόδρα , etc.).

II. Compar., μᾶλλον .

1. Of increase, more; with qualifying words: πολλῷ , Mark 10:48, Luke 18:39, Romans 5:15; Romans 5:17 Philippians 2:12, al.; πόσῳ , Luke 12:24, Romans 11:12, al.; τοσούτῳ . . . ὅσῳ , Hebrews 10:25.

2. Of comparison, the more: Luke 5:15, John 5:18, Acts 5:14, 1 Thessalonians 4:1; 1 Thessalonians 4:10, 2 Peter 1:10; ἔτι μ . καὶ μ ., Philippians 1:9; c. compar., Mark 7:36, 2 Corinthians 7:13; πολλῴ μ κρεῖσον , Philippians 1:23; μ . διαφέρειν , c. gen., Matthew 6:26; μ . , Matthew 18:13; c. gen., 1 Corinthians 14:18; as periphr. for compar., Acts 20:35, 1 Corinthians 9:15, Galatians 4:27; μ . δέ (EV, yea rather), Romans 8:34.

3. Of preference, rather, the rather, sooner: with qualifying words, πολλῷ , Matthew 6:30, πολύ , Hebrews 12:25; πολύ , Matthew 7:11, al.; in a question, μ ., 1 Corinthians 9:12; after a neg., Matthew 10:6, al.; θέλω (εὐδοκῶ ) μ ., 1 Corinthians 14:5, 2 Corinthians 5:8; ζηλῶ , 1 Corinthians 14:1; c. subst., τ . σκότος ἢ τ . φῶς , John 3:19; μ . δέ , Galatians 4:9.

III. Superl., μάλιστα , most, most of all, above all: Acts 20:38; Acts 25:26, Galatians 6:10, Philippians 4:22, 1 Timothy 4:10; 1 Timothy 5:8; 1 Timothy 5:17, 2 Timothy 4:13, Titus 1:10, Philemon 1:16, 2 Peter 2:10; μ . γνώστης , Acts 26:3.

μᾶλλον , see μάλα .

Abbott-Smith Manual Greek Lexicon of the New Testament.
Copyright © 1922 by G. Abbott-Smith, D.D., D.C.L.. T & T Clarke, London.
Vocabulary of the Greek NT

P Oxy III. 474.87 (A.D. 184?) ἀβουλίᾳ μᾶλλον ἢ πειθοῖ τῶν παρηγγελμένων, ";in defiance of rather than in obedience to the proclamations,"; ib. XIV. 1762.12 (ii/iii A.D.) σοῦ γὰρ μᾶλλον ἢ ἡμῶν [ἀκο ]υ ̣σεται ib.VI. 939.3 (iv/A.D.) (= Selections, p. 128) ὡς ἐν ἄλ ]λ ̣οις πλείστοις νῦν ἔτι μᾶλλον (cf. Phil I.9 ), ";as on many other occasions so now still more,"; and P Fay 136.5 (iv/A.D.) ὅθεν μηδένα εὐλαβούμενοι μᾶλλον ἀπαντήσατε ἀπ᾽ ἑαυτῶν ";therefore heed no one rather than me and return from where you are"; (Edd.). For the intensive μᾶλλον in the NT see Milligan on 1 Thessalonians 4:1.


The Vocabulary of the Greek New Testament.
Copyright © 1914, 1929, 1930 by James Hope Moulton and George Milligan. Hodder and Stoughton, London.
Derivative Copyright © 2015 by Allan Loder.
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