It would have given her a cleaner conscience.


Senior Member
American English
Re the subject line, I would enjoy hearing others' opinions on whether someone can have a "cleaner conscience"? Does the word clean belong to the same category of words such as perfect that have "an absolute meaning"? I think that cleaner is a comparative form of clean but I don't know whether it is applicable or correct in the example. Thanks.

P.S. Does anyone know of a list of adjectives with "an absolute meaning"?
  • Nunty

    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    Hi, Cholo. :)

    No, "clean" does not have an absolute meaning. Think of two used coffee cups; one can be cleaner (less dirty) than the other.

    I'm not aware of any such list.

    I usually hear "clear conscience" rather than "clean conscience", but that would be a different thread.


    Senior Member
    American English
    Continuing with the subject of "absolute meanings," I am reminded of a phrase in the Preamble to the United States Consitution: We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, . . .

    So even the word perfect, apparently, can be used in the construction of a comparative form.
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