small fry

plural noun

children: a treat for the small fry.
unimportant persons or objects: Her parties were closed to the small fry.
small or young fish.

Origin of small fry

First recorded in 1895–1900


small-fry, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Examples from the Web for small fry

British Dictionary definitions for small fry

small fry

pl n

people or things regarded as unimportant
young children
young or small fishes
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

Idioms and Phrases with small fry

small fry


Young children, as in This show is not suitable for small fry.


Persons of little importance or influence, as in She wasn't about to invite the Washington small fry to the reception. Both usages allude to fry in the sense of “young or small fish.” [Late 1800s]

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.