American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- adj. Small in size: a little dining room. See Synonyms at small.
- adj. Short in extent or duration; brief: There is little time left.
- adj. Small in quantity or degree: little money.
- adj. Unimportant; trivial: a little matter.
- adj. Narrow; petty: mean little comments; a little mind consumed with trivia.
- adj. Without much power or influence; of minor status.
- adj. Being at an early stage of growth; young: a little child.
- adj. Younger or youngest. Used especially of a sibling: My little brother is leaving for college next week.
- adv. Not much; scarcely: works long hours, sleeping little.
- adv. Not in the least; not at all: They little expected such a generous gift.
- n. A small quantity or amount: Give me a little.
- n. Something much less than all: I know little of their history.
- n. A short distance or time: a little down the road; waited a little.
- idiom. a little Somewhat; a bit: felt a little better.
- idiom. little by little By small degrees or increments; gradually.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Not large or much. Of small size, bulk, or compass; diminutive, absolutely or relatively: as, a little grain of sand; a little child or man; the little finger.
- Not large in number; having few constituent, members or parts: as, a little army or fleet; a little city.
- Not much; of small amount, quantity, or degree; restricted; limited: as, a little food or drink; little joy or happiness; little influence.
- Not of great extent or duration; not long; short in space or time; brief: as, a little way or distance; a little while.
- Not great; small in consideration, dignity, consequence, etc.; petty; inconsiderable; insignificant: as, a little office; little affairs; a little accident.
- Hence— Petty in character; mean; narrow; wanting breadth or largeness: as, a little soul or mind.
- Synonyms Minute, tiny.
- and Scanty, slender, moderate.
- Insignificant, contemptible, weak. See littleness.
- n. A small quantity, amount, space, or the like.
- In a small quantity or degree; not much; slightly.
- To become little or less.
- To make less. Compare belittle.
- adj. Small in size.
- adj. Insignificant, trivial.
- adj. Very young.
- adj. of a sibling Younger.
- adj. Used with the name of place, especially of a country, to denote a neighborhood whose residents or storekeepers are from that place.
- adj. Small in amount or number, having few members.
- adv. Not much.
- Not much, only a little: only a small amount (of).
GNU Webster's 1913
- adj. Small in size or extent; not big; diminutive; -- opposed to
- adj. Short in duration; brief.
- adj. Small in quantity or amount; not much
- adj. Small in dignity, power, or importance; not great; insignificant; contemptible.
- adj. Small in force or efficiency; not strong; weak; slight; inconsiderable.
- adj. Small in extent of views or sympathies; narrow; shallow; contracted; mean; illiberal; ungenerous.
- n. That which is little; a small quantity, amount, space, or the like.
- n. A small degree or scale; miniature.
- adv. In a small quantity or degree; not much; slightly; somewhat; -- often with a preceding it.
- adv. not much
- adj. low in stature; not tall
- adj. (of children and animals) young, immature
- adj. small in a way that arouses feelings (of tenderness or its opposite depending on the context)
- n. a small amount or duration
- adj. limited or below average in number or quantity or magnitude or extent
- adj. (informal) small and of little importance
- adj. (quantifier used with mass nouns) small in quantity or degree; not much or almost none or (with `a') at least some
- adj. lowercase.
- adj. (of a voice) faint
- From Middle English litel, from Old English lȳtel, from Proto-Germanic *lūtilaz (“tending to stoop, crouched, little”), from Proto-Indo-European *lewd- (“to bend, bent, small”), equivalent to lout + -le. Cognate with Dutch luttel, German lütt and lützel, West Frisian lyts, Low German lütt, Old High German luzzil, Middle High German lützel, Old English lūtan; and perhaps to Old English lytig ("deceitful, lot deceit"), Gothic 𐌻𐌹𐌿𐍄𐍃 (liuts, "deceitful"), 𐌻𐌿𐍄𐌾𐌰𐌽 (lutjan, "to deceive"); compare also Icelandic lítill ("little"), Swedish liten, Danish liden, lille, Gothic 𐌻𐌴𐌹𐍄𐌹𐌻𐍃 (leitils), which appear to have a different root vowel. More at lout. (Wiktionary)
- Middle English, from Old English lȳtel. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“By the end, it's almost arbitrary which is little comfort, I know, but hopefully it is, well....a *little* comfort”
“But now I is a little older a *little* only and can use mah newfound maturity to turn those naughty bois over mah knee and teach them some manners.”
“I love all the little treats, candies, lipgloss..little slippers, cards, ribbons.. love that red w/ white polka dot ribbon..”
“Okay Mom .. move this arm a little to the left, now crouch just a little okay .. we're making progress.”
“Similarly, when the travel agent says ˜Reno is the biggest little city™, we do not interpret her as overlooking the vagueness of ˜little city™.”
“I've found on planetmagrathea.com that this sentence of Slartibartfast's is changed in the feature film but the formula remains: ... so that Slartibartfast no longer claims to know little of these early sixties sitcoms of which you speak but instead knows little of this cheese of which you speak.”
“And I had to laugh a little when we got into a *little* argument last night over how long his hair is!”
“_He that contemneth small things shall fall by little and little_.”
“Of all his poems, however, the loveliest and best is a little simple song, _There was a time when I was very little_, which every Dane, high or low, knows by heart, and which is matchless in its simplicity and pathos.”
“If a girl of high ideals is thinking about them now and knows that she has of late been tempted to lower them a little, let me ask her to look at them very earnestly before she consents to tarnish them _even a little_.”
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