Definition of supererogation in English:



  • The performance of more work than duty requires.

    • ‘All this comes as a prodigal act of supererogation: Merely confronted with Shakespeare's poetic diction and iambic pentameter, few cast members manage to keep their heads above water.’
    • ‘He can make this claim because of his adherence to the holiness code and his supererogation of the law.’
    • ‘As a result, there can be no question of moving from commandments to counsels in a simplistic way, and no sense that perfection involves supererogation.’
    • ‘I say that these - which are the laws of mesmerism in its general features - it would be supererogation to demonstrate; nor shall I inflict upon my readers so needless a demonstration to-day.’
    • ‘In partnership with moral theology, it forms also a practical theology of the Christian life that does not require perfection as supererogation.’


Early 16th century: from late Latin supererogatio(n-), from supererogare pay in addition from super- over + erogare pay out.