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little    : [l'ɪtəl]
Little \Lit"tle\ (l[i^]t"t'l), a. [The regular comparative and
superlative of this word, littler and littlest, are often
used as comparatives of the sense small; but in the sense
few, less, or, rarely, lesser is the proper comparative and
least is the superlative. See {Lesser}. The regular form,
littlest, occurs also in some of the English provinces, and
occasionally in colloquial language. " Where love is great,
the littlest doubts are fear." --Shak.] [OE. litel, lutel,
AS. l[=y]tel, l[imac]tel, l[=y]t; akin to OS. littil, D.
luttel, LG. l["u]tt, OHG. luzzil, MHG. l["u]tzel; and perh.
to AS. lytig deceitful, lot deceit, Goth. liuts deceitful,
lut[=o]n to deceive; cf. also Icel. l[imac]till little, Sw.
liten, Dan. liden, lille, Goth. leitils, which appear to have
a different root vowel.]
1. Small in size or extent; not big; diminutive; -- opposed
to {big} or {large}; as, a little body; a little animal; a
little piece of ground; a little hill; a little distance;
a little child.
[1913 Webster]

He sought to see Jesus who he was; and could not for
the press, because he was little of stature. --Luke
xix. 3.
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2. Short in duration; brief; as, a little sleep.
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Best him enough: after a little time,
I'll beat him too. --Shak.
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3. Small in quantity or amount; not much; as, a little food;
a little air or water.
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Conceited of their little wisdoms, and doting upon
their own fancies. --Barrow.
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4. Small in dignity, power, or importance; not great;
insignificant; contemptible.
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When thou wast little in thine own sight, wast thou
not made the head of the tribes? --I Sam. xv.
17.
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5. Small in force or efficiency; not strong; weak; slight;
inconsiderable; as, little attention or exertion;little
effort; little care or diligence.
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By sad experiment I know
How little weight my words with thee can find.
--Milton.
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6. Small in extent of views or sympathies; narrow; shallow;
contracted; mean; illiberal; ungenerous.
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The long-necked geese of the world that are ever
hissing dispraise,
Because their natures are little. --Tennyson.
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{Little chief}. (Zool.) See {Chief hare}.

{Little Englander}, an Englishman opposed to territorial
expansion of the British Empire. See {Antiimperialism},
above. Hence:

{Little Englandism}.

{Little finger}, the fourth and smallest finger of the hand.


{Little go} (Eng. Universities), a public examination about
the middle of the course, which is less strict and
important than the final one; -- called also {smalls}. Cf.
{Great go}, under {Great}. --Thackeray.

{Little hours} (R. C. Ch.), the offices of prime, tierce,
sext, and nones. Vespers and compline are sometimes
included.

{Little-neck clam}, or {Little neck} (Zool.), the quahog, or
round clam.

{Little ones}, young children.
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The men, and the women, and the little ones. --Deut.
ii. 34.
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{Little peach}, a disease of peaches in which the fruit is
much dwarfed, and the leaves grow small and thin. The
cause is not known.

{Little Rhod"y}, Rhode Island; -- a nickname alluding to its
small size. It is the smallest State of the United States.


{Little Sisters of the Poor} (R. C. Ch.), an order of women
who care for old men and women and infirm poor, for whom
special houses are built. It was established at St.
Servan, Britany, France, in 1840, by the Abb['e] Le
Pailleur.

{Little slam} (Bridge Whist), the winning of 12 out of the 13
tricks. It counts 20 points on the honor score. Contrasted
with {grand slam}.
[Webster 1913 Suppl.]


Little \Lit"tle\, adv.
In a small quantity or degree; not much; slightly; somewhat;
-- often with a preceding it. " The poor sleep little."
--Otway.
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Little \Lit"tle\, n.
1. That which is little; a small quantity, amount, space, or
the like.
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Much was in little writ. --Dryden.
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There are many expressions, which carrying with them
no clear ideas, are like to remove but little of my
ignorance. --Locke.
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2. A small degree or scale; miniature. " His picture in
little." --Shak.
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A little, to or in a small degree; to a limited
extent; somewhat; for a short time. " Stay a
little." --Shak.
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The painter flattered her a little. --Shak.


{By little and little}, or {Little by little}, by slow
degrees; piecemeal; gradually.
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little
adv 1: not much; "he talked little about his family"
adj 1: limited or below average in number or quantity or
magnitude or extent; "a little dining room"; "a little
house"; "a small car"; "a little (or small) group" [synonym:
{small}, {little}] [ant: {big}, {large}]
2: (quantifier used with mass nouns) small in quantity or
degree; not much or almost none or (with `a') at least some;
"little rain fell in May"; "gave it little thought"; "little
time is left"; "we still have little money"; "a little hope
remained"; "there's slight chance that it will work";
"there's a slight chance it will work" [synonym: {little(a)},
{slight}] [ant: {much(a)}]
3: (of children and animals) young, immature; "what a big little
boy you are"; "small children" [synonym: {little}, {small}]
4: (informal) small and of little importance; "a fiddling sum of
money"; "a footling gesture"; "our worries are lilliputian
compared with those of countries that are at war"; "a little
(or small) matter"; "a dispute over niggling details";
"limited to petty enterprises"; "piffling efforts"; "giving a
police officer a free meal may be against the law, but it
seems to be a picayune infraction" [synonym: {fiddling},
{footling}, {lilliputian}, {little}, {niggling}, {piddling},
{piffling}, {petty}, {picayune}, {trivial}]
5: (of a voice) faint; "a little voice"; "a still small voice"
[synonym: {little}, {small}]
6: low in stature; not tall; "he was short and stocky"; "short
in stature"; "a short smokestack"; "a little man" [synonym:
{short}, {little}] [ant: {tall}]
7: lowercase; "little a"; "small a"; "e.e.cummings's poetry is
written all in minuscule letters" [synonym: {little},
{minuscule}, {small}]
8: small in a way that arouses feelings (of tenderness or its
opposite depending on the context); "a nice little job";
"bless your little heart"; "my dear little mother"; "a sweet
little deal"; "I'm tired of your petty little schemes";
"filthy little tricks"; "what a nasty little situation"
n 1: a small amount or duration; "he accepted the little they
gave him"

337 Moby Thesaurus words for "little":
Lilliputian, a bit, a breath, a little, abject, abominable, ace,
arrant, atom, atrocious, authoritarian, baby, back-burner, bantam,
barely, base, beggarly, bigot, bigoted, bit, borne, bowshot, brief,
brief span, by a hair, by an ace, casual, cheap, cheesy,
close quarters, close range, closed, collateral, compact,
compendious, concise, constricted, contemptible, crack, cramped,
creedbound, crumb, crummy, cursory, curt, curtal, curtate, dab,
deaf, deaf to reason, debased, decurtate, deficient, degraded,
depraved, depthless, despicable, diminutive, dinky, dirty,
disgusting, dispensable, dole, dollop, dot, dram, dribble, driblet,
dwarf, earreach, earshot, elfin, ever so little, execrable,
exiguous, exiguously, faintly, fanatical, farthing, feebly, few,
flagrant, fleck, flyspeck, footling, fortuitous, foul, fragment,
fulsome, gobbet, grain, granule, grave, groat, gross, gunshot,
hair, hair space, hairbreadth, hairsbreadth, half-pint, handful,
hardly, hardly any, hardly ever, heinous, hidebound, illiberal,
immaterial, imperfect, imperfectly, in a nutshell, in miniature,
in the small, inadequate, inappreciable, inappreciably, inch,
incidental, incompetent, inconsequential, inconsequentially,
inconsiderable, ineffectual, inessential, inferior, infinitesimal,
infrequently, insignificant, insignificantly, instant,
instantaneous, insufficient, insular, iota, irrelevant, itsy-bitsy,
itty-bitty, jot, just a bit, knee-high, light, lightly, limited,
little bit, little ways, little while, little-minded, low,
low-down, lumpen, maladroit, mangy, meager, meagerly, mean,
mean-minded, mean-spirited, measly, mediocre, microscopic, midget,
mingy, mini, miniature, minim, minimally, minimum, minor,
minuscule, minute, minutely, minutiae, miserable, mite, modicum,
molecule, moment, monkey, monstrous, mote, narrow, narrow-hearted,
narrow-minded, narrow-souled, narrow-spirited, nearsighted,
nefarious, negligible, negligibly, niggard, niggardly, no,
no great shakes, no time, nonessential, not any, not comparable,
not enough, not hardly, not in it, not much, not vital, nutshell,
obnoxious, odious, one-horse, only just, ounce, out of it,
pair of winks, paltry, parochial, particle, pebble, petit, petite,
petty, picayune, picayunish, piddling, pinch, pindling, pint-sized,
pistol shot, pittance, point, poky, poor, potty, provincial, puny,
purblind, pygmy, rank, rarely, reptilian, scabby, scant, scantily,
scanty, scarcely, scrap, scrubby, scruffy, scruple, scummy, scurvy,
secondary, seldom, self-centered, selfish, set, shabby, shallow,
shoddy, shoestring, short, short and sweet, short distance,
short piece, short spell, short time, short way, shortsighted,
skimpy, skin-deep, slight, slightly, small, small space,
small-beer, small-minded, smallish, smally, smidgen, smidgin,
smitch, span, sparse, speck, spitting distance, spoonful, spot,
spurt, squalid, step, stingy, straitlaced, stuffy, subordinate,
subsidiary, succinct, summary, superficial, synoptic,
tant soit peu, taste, technical, teensy-weensy, teeny, teeny-weeny,
thimbleful, tiny, tiny bit, tittle, toy, transient, trifling,
trifling amount, triflingly, trivia, trivial, two shakes,
two-by-four, uncatholic, uncharitable, unchivalrous, undersized,
unessential, unfrequently, ungenerous, unimaginative, unimportant,
unimpressive, unliberal, unmentionable, unnoteworthy, unoften,
unskillful, vile, weakly, wee, whit, wretched, young, youthful



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English Dictionary  2005-2009

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