adjective, small·er, small·est.
adverb, small·er, small·est.
- household linen, as napkins, pillowcases, etc.
Origin of small
Synonyms for small
Antonyms for small
Related Words for smallestlittlest, basal, basic, essential, fundamental, least, lowest, minimum, nominal, token
Examples from the Web for smallest
Contemporary Examples of smallest
“There was still no pulse, not even the smallest bit,” Johnson says.'Please Don't Die!': The Frantic Battle to Save Murdered Cops
December 22, 2014
It seeps up into the city from below, through even the smallest cracks and drains.The Fiery Underground Oil Pit Eating L.A.
December 6, 2014
Because the fact of the matter is the Today show part is really, in a way, the smallest part in the great 34-hour scheme of it.Al Roker, Sleepless in 30 Rock for #Rokerthon
November 12, 2014
The concentration of PM2.5, the smallest particulate matter, is at 153 micrograms per cubic meter.Beijing’s ‘Star Trek’ APEC Summit
November 11, 2014
He won then with less than 38 percent of the vote, the smallest plurality of any winning gubernatorial candidate in the country.Republican Wave Carries Maine Governor Paul LePage to Victory
November 5, 2014
Historical Examples of smallest
I would not let the smallest child stroke his father's beard roughly.
You are right; I do not feel the smallest inclination to hate him.
Why, there are hundreds and hundreds of them--and the smallest worth not less than fifty pounds!The Leopard Woman
Stewart Edward White
And when I had recovered them all, even to the smallest, I took my treasure home.Green Mansions
W. H. Hudson
My smallest action, my most trivial habit, was familiar to them.In the Valley
Word Origin for small
Old English smæl "thin, slender, narrow; fine," from Proto-Germanic *smal- "small animal; small" (cf. Old Saxon, Danish, Swedish, Middle Dutch, Dutch, Old High German smal, Old Frisian smel, German schmal "narrow, slender," Gothic smalista "smallest," Old Norse smali "small cattle, sheep"), perhaps from a PIE root *(s)melo- "smaller animal" (cf. Greek melon, Old Irish mil "a small animal;" Old Church Slavonic malu "bad"). Original sense of "narrow" now almost obsolete, except in reference to waistline and intestines.
My sister ... is as white as a lilly, and as small as a wand. [Shakespeare, "Two Gentlemen of Verona," 1591]
Sense of "not large, of little size" developed in Old English. Of children, "young," from mid-13c. Meaning "inferior in degree or amount" is from late 13c. Meaning "trivial, unimportant" is from mid-14c. Sense of "having little property or trade" is from 1746. That of "characterized by littleness of mind or spirit, base, low, mean" is from 1824. As an adverb by late 14c.
Small fry, first recorded 1690s of little fish, 1885 of insignificant people. Small potatoes "no great matter" first attested 1924; small change "something of little value" is from 1902; small talk "chit-chat, trifling conversation" (1751) first recorded in Chesterfield's "Letters." Small world as a comment upon an unexpected meeting of acquaintances is recorded from 1895. Small-arms, indicating those capable of being carried in the hand (contrasted to ordnance) is recorded from 1710.
early 13c., "small person or animal," from small (adj.). From c.1300 as "persons of low rank" (opposed to great); late 15c. as "the small part" of something (e.g. small of the back, 1530s).
In addition to the idioms beginning with small
- small beer
- small cog in a large wheel
- small frog in a big pond
- small fry
- small hours
- small print
- small talk
- small time
- small wonder
- big fish in a small pond
- (small) cog in the wheel
- give thanks for small blessings
- it's a small world
- little (small) frog in a big pond
- make a (small) fortune
- no (small) wonder
- still small voice