lilliputian

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See also: Lilliputian

English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From the name of a fictional island called Lilliput in the novel Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • (US) IPA(key): /ˌlɪlɪˈpjuʃən/
  • (file)

Noun[edit]

lilliputian (plural lilliputians)

  1. A very small person or being.
    • 1726 October 28, [Jonathan Swift], “A Great Storm Described, the Long-Boat Sent to Fetch Water, the Author Goes with It to Discover the Country. []”, in Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World. [] [Gulliver’s Travels], volume I, London: [] Benj[amin] Motte, [], OCLC 995220039, part II (A Voyage to Brobdingnag), page 158:
      I reflected what a Mortification it muſt prove to me to appear as inconſiderable in this Nation as one ſingle Lilliputian would be among us.
  2. (genetics) A fruit fly gene that, when mutated, makes cells abnormally small. See AFF2.

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Adjective[edit]

lilliputian (comparative more lilliputian, superlative most lilliputian)

  1. Very small, diminutive
    • 1827, Lydia Sigourney, Poems, A Thunder Storm, while Travelling, page 129:
      —O'er the expanse
      Of glittering waters glides the snowy sail;—
      The lilliputian boat by infants mann'd,
      Steers amid fairy islets, circles round
      The indented shore,—...
  2. Trivial, petty

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