1. the fact of exceeding something else in amount or degree: His strength is in excess of yours.
  2. the amount or degree by which one thing exceeds another: The bill showed an excess of several hundred dollars over the estimate.
  3. an extreme or excessive amount or degree; superabundance: to have an excess of energy.
  4. a going beyond what is regarded as customary or proper: to talk to excess.
  5. immoderate indulgence; intemperance in eating, drinking, etc.


  1. more than or above what is necessary, usual, or specified; extra: a charge for excess baggage; excess profits.

verb (used with object)

  1. to dismiss, demote, transfer, or furlough (an employee), especially as part of a mass layoff.

noun (ɪkˈsɛs, ˈɛksɛs)

  1. the state or act of going beyond normal, sufficient, or permitted limits
  2. an immoderate or abnormal amount, number, extent, or degree too much or too manyan excess of tolerance
  3. the amount, number, extent, or degree by which one thing exceeds another
  4. chem a quantity of a reagent that is greater than the quantity required to complete a reactionadd an excess of acid
  5. overindulgence or intemperance
  6. insurance, mainly British a specified contribution towards the cost of a claim, stipulated on certain insurance policies as being payable by the policyholder
  7. in excess of of more than; over
  8. to excess to an inordinate extent; immoderatelyhe drinks to excess

adjective (ˈɛksɛs, ɪkˈsɛs) (usually prenominal)

  1. more than normal, necessary, or permitted; surplusexcess weight
  2. payable as a result of previous underpaymentexcess postage; an excess fare for a railway journey

late 14c., from Old French exces (14c.) “excess, extravagance, outrage,” from Latin excessus “departure, a going beyond the bounds of reason or beyond the subject,” from stem of excedere “to depart, go beyond” (see exceed). As an adjective from late 15c.


  1. An amount or quantity beyond what is normal or sufficient; a surplus.

see carry too far (to excess); in excess of.

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