less

less adj Less, Lesser, smaller, fewer are comparable terms that approach each other in meaning but are not synonyms and are rarely interchangeable.
Less means not as much, especially in degree, value, or amount, and its opposite is usually more. It applies chiefly to collective nouns or nouns denoting a mass or abstract whole
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the moon yields less light than the sun

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John has less money than James

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please make less noise

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humility has less appeal to men of today than other virtues

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Lesser means not as great, as important, or as significant as that with which the thing so qualified is compared and implies opposition to greater or major
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God made ... the lesser light to rule the night— Gen 1:16

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humility is not, in Christian ethics, regarded as a lesser virtue

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lesser breaches of the law— Locke

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In vernacular names lesser implies that the kind of plant or animal so designated is distinguished from a very similar one carrying the same name chiefly by its comparative smallness of size
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the lesser celandine

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the lesser snipe

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Smaller means not as large as that with which the thing so qualified is compared (as in size, dimensions, or quantity)
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the smaller of two rooms

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give her the smaller table for it will take up less room

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Fewer means not as many and implies a difference in number of individuals or units; the term therefore modifies a plural noun
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he has fewer pupils than he had last year

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give her fewer lumps of sugar

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no fewer than fifty were present

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Antonyms: more

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • less — less·est; less·ness; let·ter·less; li·cense·less; lid·less; life·less; life·less·ly; life·less·ness; light·less; light·less·ness; limb·less; lime·less; lim·it·less; line·less; lint·less; lip·less; list·less; list·less·ly; list·less·ness;… …   English syllables

  • less — [ les ] function word *** Less is the comparative form of the function word little and can be used in the following ways: as a determiner (before a noun): Eat less fat. Schools put less emphasis on being creative. as a pronoun: Connie did less… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • Less — Less, X Terminal Basisdaten Entwickler: Mark Nudelman Aktuelle Version: 429 (11. April 2009) …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • less — Less, X Terminal Basisdaten Entwickler Mark Nudelman Aktuelle Version 4 …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • less — Fichier log de la commnande emerge de gentoo affiché par less dans un terminal xfce …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Less — est une commande Unix permettant de visualiser un fichier texte page par page (sans le modifier). Sa fonction est similaire à la commande more, mais permet en plus de revenir en arrière ou de rechercher une chaîne. Contrairement à vi (qui permet… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Less — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda less Captura de less en un terminal X. Desarrollador Mark Nudelman …   Wikipedia Español

  • Less — Вывод less в X Терминал Тип Системная утилита Разработчик Mark Nudelman ОС …   Википедия

  • less — [les] adj. [ME les < OE læs, adv. læssa, adj. (used as compar. of lytel, LITTLE), akin to OFris les < IE * leis < base * lei , to diminish, meager, > LITTLE] 1. alt. compar. of LITTLE 2. not so much; smaller in size or amount [to… …   English World dictionary

  • less — Captura de less en un terminal X. Desarrollador Mark Nudelman [1] …   Wikipedia Español

  • Less — Less, a. [OE. lesse, AS. l[=ae]ssa; akin to OFries. l[=e]ssa; a compar. from a lost positive form. Cf. {Lesser}, {Lest}, {Least}. Less has the sense of the comparative degree of little.] Smaller; not so large or great; not so much; shorter;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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