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Alternative forms[edit]


sub- +‎ class


  • Hyphenation: sub‧class
  • (file)


subclass (plural subclasses)

  1. A secondary class within a main class.
    • 1959, "Steam's Finest Hour" edited by David P. Morgan, Kalmbach Publishing Co., referring to the R-1 Mountain class loco.
      These 4-8-2's, of which B&M eventually purchased 18 in various subclasses, could almost haul the tonnage of a T and more than made up for the slight deficiency by raising the maximum speed limit from 45 to 70 miles per hour, thanks to 73-inch drivers.
    • 2014, James Lambert, “Diachronic stability in Indian English lexis”, in World Englishes, page 116:
      Goffin is a prose text interspersed with short lists of typical terms exemplifying certain sub-classes of Indian English lexis.
  2. (taxonomy) A rank directly below class.
  3. (object-oriented programming) An object class derived from another class (its superclass) from which it inherits a base set of properties and methods.





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subclass (third-person singular simple present subclasses, present participle subclassing, simple past and past participle subclassed)

  1. (transitive, computing) (in object-oriented programming) To create a subclass of (some class).
    I subclassed the Button class to create a more specialised FancyButton class for my user interface.
  2. (transitive, computing) To cause (an object) to act as an instance of a subclass (by creating the desired subclass and instantiating an object of this subclass).
    • 2000, James D. Foxall, MCSD in a Nutshell: The Visual Basic Exams, page 93:
      Since Windows knows about these events, your application should be able to know about them as well. In order to accomplish this, subclass the window of a form or control, intercepting all of its events.


  • (antonym(s) of "cause to act as a member of a subclass"): unsubclass

Derived terms[edit]