Synonyms for pygmy

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Antonyms for pygmy

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Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

EXAMPLES FROM THE WEB FOR PYGMY

It was written about in the Pygmy histories, and talked about in their ancient traditions.

They ran their eyes down the long table; every person there was a pygmy.

It was no pygmy undertaking upon which the Americans had embarked.

Had I brought with me or did I hear now a whispered: "Pygmy, again!"

"This one might be a pygmy, for all we know," said the Very Young Man.

The forest is the home of the Pygmy, as in all probability it was of the man-ape.

There is nothing to show that the idea of agriculture ever entered the mind of a Pygmy.

The Pygmy is negro-like in cast of countenance and bodily formation.

It was like a pygmy daring a giant, a tugboat challenging the Imperator.

Kirk, the old baseball player, looked like a pygmy beside him.

WORD ORIGIN

late 14c., Pigmei, "member of a fabulous race of dwarfs," described by Homer and Herodotus and said to inhabit Egypt or Ethiopia and India, from Latin Pygmaei (singular Pygmaeus), from Greek Pygmaioi, plural of Pygmaios "a Pygmy," noun use of adjective meaning "dwarfish," literally "of the length of a pygme; a pygme tall," from pygme "cubit," literally "fist," the measure of length from the elbow to the knuckle; related to pyx "with clenched fist" and to Latin pugnus "fist" (see pugnacious).

Figurative use for "person of small importance" is from 1590s. Believed in 17c. to refer to chimpanzees or orangutans, and occasionally the word was used in this sense. The ancient word was applied by Europeans to the equatorial African race 1863, but the tribes probably were known to the ancients and likely were the original inspiration for the legend. As an adjective from 1590s. Related: Pygmean; Pygmaean.

MORE RELATED WORDS FOR PYGMY

Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.