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sparse

[spahrs] /spɑrs/
adjective, sparser, sparsest.
1.
thinly scattered or distributed:
a sparse population.
2.
not thick or dense; thin:
sparse hair.
3.
scanty; meager.
Origin
1715-1725
1715-25; < Latin sparsus, past participle of spargere to scatter, sparge
Related forms
sparsely, adverb
sparseness, sparsity
[spahr-si-tee] /ˈspɑr sɪ ti/ (Show IPA),
noun
unsparse, adjective
unsparsely, adverb
unsparseness, noun
Synonyms
1–3. See scanty.
Antonyms
1–3. abundant.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for un sparsest

sparse

/spɑːs/
adjective
1.
scattered or scanty; not dense
Derived Forms
sparsely, adverb
sparseness, sparsity, noun
Word Origin
C18: from Latin sparsus, from spargere to scatter
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for un sparsest
sparse
1727, from L. sparsus "scattered," pp. of spargere "to scatter, spread," from PIE base *(s)pregh- "to jerk, scatter" (cf. Skt. parjanya- "rain, rain god," Avestan fra-sparega "branch, twig," lit. "that which is jerked off a tree," O.N. freknur "freckles," Swed. dial. sprygg "brisk, active," Lith. sprogti "shoot, bud," O.Ir. arg "a drop").
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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