slight

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English slight (bad, of poor quality, unimportant, trivial, slender, slim, smooth, level), from Old English sliht (smooth, level), from Proto-Germanic *slihtaz. Cognate with Danish slet (bad, evil, poor, nasty, wrong), Dutch slecht (bad), Icelandic sléttur (even, smooth, level), German schlecht (bad) and schlicht (plain, artless, natural), Norwegian slett (even), Low German slecht (bad), Swedish slät (smooth). Related to slighten, slicht.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • enPR: slīt, IPA(key): /slaɪt/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -aɪt
  • Homophone: sleight

Adjective[edit]

slight (comparative slighter, superlative slightest)

  1. Small in amount, gentle, or weak; inconsiderable; unimportant; insignificant; not severe.
    a slight (i.e. feeble) effort;  a slight (i.e. not deep) impression;  a slight (i.e. not convincing) argument;  a slight (i.e. not thorough) examination;  a slight (i.e. not severe) pain;  in the slight future (i.e. the very near future)
    • (Can we date this quote?) Alexander Pope
      Slight is the subject, but not so the praise.
    • (Can we date this quote?) John Locke
      Some firmly embrace doctrines upon slight grounds.
    • 1922, Ben Travers, chapter 2, in A Cuckoo in the Nest[1]:
      Mother very rightly resented the slightest hint of condescension. She considered that the exclusiveness of Peter's circle was due not to its distinction, but to the fact that it was an inner Babylon of prodigality and whoredom, [] .
  2. Not stout or heavy; slender.
    a slight but graceful woman
    • (Can we date this quote?) Sir Walter Scott
      his own figure, which was formerly so slight
  3. (regional) Even, smooth or level; still (of the sea).
    A slight stone
    The sea was slight and calm
  4. (obsolete) Foolish; silly; weak in intellect.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Hudibras to this entry?)
  5. (regional, obsolete) Bad, of poor quality (as goods).
    A gullible chapman was fooled into buying really slight goods.
  6. (dated) Slighting; treating with disdain.
    • 1863, Sheridan Le Fanu, The House by the Churchyard
      This slight way of treating both his book and his ancestors nettled little Puddock – who never himself took a liberty, and expected similar treatment – but he knew Sturk, the nature of the beast, and he only bowed grandly []

Synonyms[edit]

Antonyms[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

Verb[edit]

slight (third-person singular simple present slights, present participle slighting, simple past and past participle slighted)

  1. (transitive) To treat as slight or not worthy of attention; to make light of.
    • (Can we date this quote?) Cowper
      the wretch who slights the bounty of the skies
  2. (transitive) To give lesser weight or importance to.
    • 1915, Correct English (volumes 16-17, page 182)
      Incontiguously (accent on tig; the rest of the syllables slighted) means in an incontiguous manner.
  3. (transitive) To treat with disdain or neglect, usually out of prejudice, hatred, or jealousy; to ignore disrespectfully.
  4. (intransitive) To act negligently or carelessly. (Can we add an example for this sense?)
  5. (transitive, military, of a fortification) To render no longer defensible by full or partial demolition.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Clarendon to this entry?)
  6. (transitive) To make even or level.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Hexham to this entry?)
  7. (transitive) To throw heedlessly.
    • (Can we date this quote?) Shakespeare
      The rogue slighted me into the river.

Synonyms[edit]

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Noun[edit]

English Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia

slight (plural slights)

  1. The act of slighting; a deliberate act of neglect or discourtesy.
    • (Can we date this quote?) Benjamin Franklin
      Never use a slighting expression to her, even in jest; for slights in jest, after frequent bandyings, are apt to end in angry earnest.
  2. (obsolete) Sleight.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Edmund Spenser to this entry?)

Synonyms[edit]

Antonyms[edit]

Derived terms[edit]

Translations[edit]

References[edit]

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for slight in
Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)

Anagrams[edit]


Middle English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Old English sliht, from Proto-Germanic *slihtaz.

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

slight

  1. Level, even, smooth; having no bumps or lumps.
  2. (rare) Of little importance or relevance.
  3. (rare) Slim, narrow, skinny; of little breadth.
  4. (rare) Badly made, poorly-built, or low-quality.

Descendants[edit]

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