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From Ancient Greek Πυγμαῖος (Pugmaîos, a member of a race of dwarves), from πυγμή (pugmḗ, fist (as small as a fist))



pygmy (plural pygmies)

  1. (often capitalized, usually in the plural: Pygmies) A member of one of various Ancient Equatorial African tribal peoples, notable for their very short stature
    The Bantu immigration drove many Pygmy tribes into the darkest jungle, while other Pygmies were reduced to cohabitation in a subservient status
  2. (Greek mythology) A member of a race of dwarfs
    Homer and Herodote mentioned Pygmies in India (which would fit the Andamanese Negritoes) or Ethiopia (then meaning all Subsaharan Africa)
  3. (figuratively) Any dwarfish person
    Everyone looked like Pygmies whenever giant Joe joined his classmates
  4. (figuratively) An insignificant person, at least in some respect
    Despite his towering stature, the minister proved a political pygmy



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The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.


pygmy (comparative more pygmy, superlative most pygmy)

  1. Relating or belonging to the Pygmy people
  2. Like a pygmy; unusually short or small for its kind
    Soil exhaustion ultimately produces a pygmy crop at best


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