In many game systems (particularly fantasy or role-playing games), relative qualities or power levels are denoted by naming things using "lesser" or "greater". For example, in Dungeons and Dragons 3.5, there are weapon augmentation crystals, that might be named

  • Least crystal of Arcane Steel
  • Lesser crystal of Arcane Steel
  • Greater crystal of Arcane Steel


It seems odd to me that there is a "least", a "lesser", and a "greater", but nothing in the middle. It makes sense that a "lesser" object is lesser than the "greater" one, and vice versa, but it seems strange to not have something in the middle. Of course one could argue that the one in the middle needs no such qualifier, but I was wondering - is there a word that can stand alongside words such as "lesser" and "greater" to denote that something is the "regular" version?

I thought of "common", but that strays into ideas of rarity, which is slightly different.

  • 1
    There's no "greatest". The maximum is the missing one. "Standard" or "normal" may be the word you're looking for which means "regular". Least, lesser, standard|normal, greater, greatest.
    – TimR
    Jun 29, 2015 at 13:39
  • How about "Normal crystal of Arcane Steel"... Jun 29, 2015 at 13:41
  • Regular old everyday run-of-the-mill crystal of Arcane Steel? Also, there doesn't need to be anything in the middle—the greater crystal is greater than the lesser crystals. If there were only two crystals, one would be lesser and the other would be greater.
    – nomad
    Jun 29, 2015 at 13:48
  • The two species of Old World flamingos are the lesser flamingo and the greater flamingo. There's no plain flamingo. Jun 29, 2015 at 14:22

3 Answers 3


I think you are right when you say that it could be argued that 'the one in the middle' needs no qualifier. And that is likely what would be best. However, if you felt the need to emphasize its 'normality', so to speak, then I believe words such as standard, common, everyday, normal, conventional, or ordinary would suffice.

  • Also, nominal.
    – jxh
    Jun 29, 2015 at 16:19

There are several metaphorical realms you should explore.

Go mathematical and you can select from medium, median, average.

Choose quality and you have standard, paradigm,

If height is your metaphor mezzanine, base camp, Appenine.

Or there's distance arrow-flight, middling, stone's-throw.


Considering that Lesser, Greater, etc. are similar to prefixes it's possible that there's no need for a word in between “lesser” and “greater.” Instead of using a word in between, you could use the absence of any word. You would do this because words like lesser or greater show that it's a lesser or greater version of it so when it's the normal version there is no need to specify.

For example:

  • Lesser crystal of Arcane Steel
  • Crystal of Arcane Steel
  • Greater crystal of Arcane Steel

Other than that you could use the word "normal."

For example:

  • Lesser crystal of Arcane Steel
  • Normal Crystal of Arcane Steel
  • Greater crystal of Arcane Steel

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge that you have read and understand our privacy policy and code of conduct.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.