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second-rate (not comparable)

  1. (UK, military, nautical, historical) Of a Royal Navy ship of the line in the Napoleonic Era: having 80–98 guns across three gun decks, a complement of 700–750, and weighing approximately 2,200 tons burthen.
  2. (idiomatic) Of mediocre quality; not first-rate.
    • 1971, Peter Brown, The World of Late Antiquity: AD 150—750, Thames & Hudson LTD, published 2013, →ISBN, page 53:
      ‘Revelation’, to a philosopher such as Plotinus, was not merely irrational: it led to second-rate counterfeits of traditional academic philosophical culture. It was as if the inhabitants of an underdeveloped country were to seek to catch up with western technology by claiming to have learnt nuclear physics through dreams and oracles.
    • 1888, Rudyard Kipling, A Second-rate Woman:
      They are intrigued by Mrs Deelville; she is dowdy, languid-voiced, and ill-dressed, in every way appearing second-rate, who nonetheless - rather tiresomely - seems to have the knack of attracting men.


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second-rate (plural second-rates)

  1. (UK, military, nautical, historical) A second-rate ship of the line.

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