paltry

[ pawl-tree ]
See synonyms for: paltrypaltriness on Thesaurus.com

adjective,pal·tri·er, pal·tri·est.
  1. ridiculously or insultingly small: a paltry sum.

  2. utterly worthless.

  1. mean or contemptible: a paltry coward.

Origin of paltry

1
First recorded in 1560–70; from Low German paltrig “ragged,” equivalent to *palter “rag” (dialectal German Palter) + -ig-y1

synonym study For paltry

1. See petty.

Other words for paltry

Opposites for paltry

Other words from paltry

  • pal·tri·ly, adverb
  • pal·tri·ness, noun
  • un·pal·try, adjective

Words that may be confused with paltry

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use paltry in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for paltry

paltry

/ (ˈpɔːltrɪ) /


adjective-trier or -triest
  1. insignificant; meagre

  2. worthless or petty

Origin of paltry

1
C16: from Low Germanic palter, paltrig ragged

Derived forms of paltry

  • paltrily, adverb
  • paltriness, noun

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012