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See more synonyms for slender on Thesaurus.com
adjective, slen·der·er, slen·der·est.
  1. having a circumference that is small in proportion to the height or length: a slender post.
  2. thin or slight; light and graceful: slender youths.
  3. small in size, amount, extent, etc.; meager: a slender income.
  4. having little value, force, or justification: slender prospects.
  5. thin or weak, as sound.
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Origin of slender

1300–50; Middle English slendre, sclendre < ?
Related formsslen·der·ly, adverbslen·der·ness, nounun·slen·der, adjective


See more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
2. Slender, slight, slim imply a tendency toward thinness. As applied to the human body, slender implies a generally attractive and pleasing thinness: slender hands. Slight often adds the idea of frailness to that of thinness: a slight, almost fragile, figure. Slim implies a lithe or delicate thinness: a slim and athletic figure. 4. trivial, trifling. 5. fragile, feeble, fine, delicate, flimsy.


2. fat, stocky.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for slenderness

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Since then his slenderness has developed into plumpness and his hope into certitude.

    My Double Life

    Sarah Bernhardt

  • But, as I had anticipated, our security lay in our slenderness.

    The Frozen Pirate

    W. Clark Russell

  • But the grey in this case was not so pure, nor were the straightness and the slenderness so maidenly.

    The Tragic Muse

    Henry James

  • He is dark and massive—a splendid foil for his wife's slenderness and fairness.

    Mistress Anne

    Temple Bailey

  • Yet it carried itself with an effect of tallness and slenderness and grace.

    The Combined Maze

    May Sinclair

British Dictionary definitions for slenderness


  1. of small width relative to length or height
  2. (esp of a person's figure) slim and well-formed
  3. small or inadequate in amount, size, etcslender resources
  4. (of hopes, etc) having little foundation; feeble
  5. very smalla slender margin
  6. (of a sound) lacking volume
  7. phonetics (now only in Irish phonology) relating to or denoting a close front vowel, such as i or e
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Derived Formsslenderly, adverbslenderness, noun

Word Origin

C14 slendre, of unknown origin
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

Word Origin and History for slenderness



c.1400, earlier sclendre (late 14c.), probably from a French source, often said to be from Old French esclendre "thin, slender," which could be from Old Dutch slinder, but the connections, and even the existence of these words, is doubtful. Related: Slenderly; slenderness.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper