Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Small in size, degree, or amount: a slight tilt; a slight surplus.
  • adj. Lacking strength, substance, or solidity; frail: a slight foundation; slight evidence.
  • adj. Of small importance or consideration; trifling: slight matters.
  • adj. Small and slender in build or construction; delicate.
  • transitive v. To treat as of small importance; make light of.
  • transitive v. To treat with discourteous reserve or inattention.
  • transitive v. To do negligently or thoughtlessly; scant.
  • n. The act or an instance of slighting.
  • n. A deliberate discourtesy; a snub: "It is easier to recount grievances and slights than it is to set down a broad redress of such grievances and slights” ( Elizabeth Kenny).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Small, weak, or gentle; not decidedly marked; not forcible; inconsiderable; unimportant; insignificant; not severe.
  • adj. Not stout or heavy; slender.
  • adj. Foolish; silly; weak in intellect.
  • v. To treat as slight or not worthy of attention, to make light of.
  • v. To treat with disdain or neglect.
  • v. To act negligently or carelessly.
  • v. To render no longer defensible by full or partial demolition.
  • v. To make even or level.
  • v. To throw heedlessly.
  • n. The act of slighting; a deliberate act of neglect or discourtesy.
  • n. Sleight.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Not decidedly marked; not forcible; inconsiderable; unimportant; insignificant; not severe; weak; gentle; -- applied in a great variety of circumstances
  • adj. Not stout or heavy; slender.
  • adj. Foolish; silly; weak in intellect.
  • adv. Slightly.
  • n. Sleight.
  • n. The act of slighting; the manifestation of a moderate degree of contempt, as by neglect or oversight; neglect; indignity.
  • transitive v. To overthrow; to demolish.
  • transitive v. To make even or level.
  • transitive v. To throw heedlessly.
  • transitive v. To disregard, as of little value and unworthy of notice; to make light of.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • An obsolete form of sly.
  • Plain; smooth (in a physical sense).
  • Slender; slim; thin; light; hence, frail; unsubstantial: as, a slight figure; a slight structure.
  • Slender in character or ability; lacking force of character or intellect; feeble; hence, silly; foolish.
  • Very small, insignificant, or trifling; unimportant.
  • Of little amount; meager; slender: as, a slight repast.
  • Of little weight, or force, or intensity; feeble; gentle; mild: as, a slight impulse or impression; slight efforts; a slight cold.
  • Of little thoroughness; superficial; cursory; hasty; imperfect; not thorough or exhaustive: as, a slight glance; slight examination; a slight raking.
  • Slighting; contemptuous; disdainful.
  • Synonyms Flimsy.
  • Petty, scanty, hurried.
  • To make plain or smooth; smooth: as, to slight linen (to iron it).
  • To make level; demolish; overthrow.
  • To throw; cast.
  • To treat as of little value, or as unworthy of notice; disregard intentionally; treat with intentional neglect or disrespect; make little of.
  • Synonyms Disregard, etc. See neglect, v. t.
  • A contraction of by this light or God's light.
  • n. An act of intentional neglect shown toward one who expects some notice or courtesy; failure to notice one; a deliberate ignoring or disregard of a person, out of displeasure or contempt.
  • n. Intentional neglect; disrespect.
  • n. Synonyms Disrespect. See the verb.
  • n. A more correct, but obsolete spelling of sleight.
  • n. A simplified and former spelling of sleight.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. pay no attention to, disrespect
  • n. a deliberate discourteous act (usually as an expression of anger or disapproval)
  • adj. (quantifier used with mass nouns) small in quantity or degree; not much or almost none or (with `a') at least some
  • adj. lacking substance or significance
  • adj. being of delicate or slender build

Etymologies

Middle English, slender, smooth, possibly of Scandinavian origin; see lei- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old English sliht, from Proto-Germanic *slihtaz. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Your expression, "and tends to depart in a slight degree," I think hardly grammatical; a _tendency_ to depart cannot very well be said to be in a slight degree; a _departure_ can, but a tendency must be either a _slight tendency_ or a _strong tendency_; the degree to which the departure may reach must depend on favourable or unfavourable causes in addition to the tendency itself.

    Alfred Russel Wallace: Letters and Reminiscences, Vol. 1

  • "In Greece there is two options, pain or default, or what I call a slight combination of the two, pain and restructuring with external support from your European partners and your friends in Washington," Buiter said.

    George Papandreou, Greece Prime Minister, To Outline Needed Budget Cuts

  • They're reporting what they call slight but significant movement in his right arm and leg.

    CNN Transcript Jan 9, 2006

  • They had recommended to the Government what they termed the slight punishment of disqualification, by Act of Parliament, from engaging in civil service; but the Ministry and their supporters determined on the summary proceeding of prosecutions under existing law for treason, thinking that few cases would be necessary, -- and all agreed that these should be selected from Boston.

    The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 10, No. 58, August, 1862

  • Whilst here Cook was for a time confined to his cabin by what he describes as a slight cold, but Mr. Forster says was a severe attack of rheumatism.

    The Life of Captain James Cook

  • Emphasis on the word slight." 13jm3211 on Twitter: "Eight of 11 in the QPR starting line up are this summer's transfers.

    BBC News - Home

  • Morelon said that it had to move away from using raw milk in its cheeses due to what he called a slight, but nonetheless real, danger of pathogenic micro organisms in the cheese that had been linked to an alleged 2005 contamination of E coli 026.

    AP-FoodTechnology RSS

  • Conan O'Brien is back at work on the Tonight Show and joking about a stunt accident that gave him what he called a slight concussion.

    WN.com - Articles related to Whitney Houston: the life, death and rebirth of a pop princess

  • The comment suggests that the definition of "slight" is ambiguous.

    Biomolecular Networks

  • Huguenot and spy, the term slight does not very aptly describe them. "

    Saint Bartholomew's Eve A Tale of the Huguenot WarS

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