from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- adj. Of small importance; trivial: a petty grievance.
- adj. Marked by narrowness of mind, ideas, or views.
- adj. Marked by meanness or lack of generosity, especially in trifling matters.
- adj. Secondary in importance or rank; subordinate. See Synonyms at trivial.
- adj. Law Variant of petit.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- adj. Little, small, secondary in rank or importance.
- adj. Insignificant, trifling, or inconsiderable.
- adj. Narrow-minded, small-minded.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- adj. Little; trifling; inconsiderable; also, inferior; subordinate
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- Small; little; trifling; trivial; inconsiderable or insignificant; of little account: as, petty payments; a petty quarrel.
- Of minor importance or gravity; not heinous or serious: as, petty trespass; a petty crime.
- Inferior as regards rank, power, capacity, possessions, etc.; not of great importance, standing, or rank: as, a petty prince; a petty proprietor.
- n. A junior scholar in a grammar-school; a little child attending school.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- adj. inferior in rank or status
- adj. (informal) small and of little importance
- n. larceny of property having a value less than some amount (the amount varies by locale)
- adj. contemptibly narrow in outlook
Middle English peti, from Old French, variant of petit; see petit.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle French petit, English since the late 14th century. The disparaging meaning develops during the 16th century. (Wiktionary)