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diminutive

[dih-min-yuh-tiv] /dɪˈmɪn yə tɪv/
adjective
1.
small; little; tiny:
a diminutive building for a model-train layout.
2.
Grammar. pertaining to or productive of a form denoting smallness, familiarity, affection, or triviality, as the suffix -let, in droplet from drop.
noun
3.
a small thing or person.
4.
Grammar. a diminutive element or formation.
5.
Heraldry. a charge, as an ordinary, smaller in length or breadth than the usual.
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English < Medieval Latin dīminūtīvus, equivalent to Latin dīminūt(us) lessened (for dēminūtus; see diminution) + -īvus -ive
Related forms
diminutively, adverb
diminutiveness, noun
Synonyms
1. See little.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for diminutively

diminutive

/dɪˈmɪnjʊtɪv/
adjective
1.
very small; tiny
2.
(grammar)
  1. denoting an affix added to a word to convey the meaning small or unimportant or to express affection, as for example the suffix -ette in French
  2. denoting a word formed by the addition of a diminutive affix
noun
3.
(grammar) a diminutive word or affix
4.
a tiny person or thing
Compare (for senses 2, 3) augmentative
Derived Forms
diminutival (dɪˌmɪnjʊˈtaɪvəl) adjective
diminutively, adverb
diminutiveness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for diminutively

diminutive

late 14c. (noun and adjective), from Old French diminutif (14c.), from Latin diminutivus, earlier deminutivus, from past participle stem of deminuere (see diminish).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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