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


She must never be worried with the slightest inkling of what has happened.

"I've not the slightest doubt of that," returned the old lady with asperity.

He was right about one thing: Gracie Dennis had not the slightest idea of dying.

You will remember that she had not the slightest faith in Dirk.

He had not the slightest idea where he was, nor of what he ought to do next.

That's why old Hiram is ready to fight the first comer on the slightest provocation.

The slightest weakness in carrying out her bold plan might cause it to fail.

These matters did not interest the searcher in the slightest; they only wasted his precious time.

I will see that no one connected with the bank shows him the slightest disrespect.

The idea never occurred to her that there should be the slightest hindrance or the least delay.


early 14c., "flat, smooth; hairless," probably from a Scandinavian source akin to Old Norse slettr "smooth, sleek," from Proto-Germanic *slikhtaz (cf. Old Saxon slicht; Low German slicht "smooth, plain common;" Old English -sliht "level," attested in eorðslihtes "level with the ground;" Old Frisian sliucht "smooth, slight," Middle Dutch sleht "even, plain," Old High German sleht, Gothic slaihts "smooth"), probably from a collateral form of PIE *sleig- "to smooth, glide, be muddy," from root *(s)lei- "slimy" (see slime (n.)).

Sense evolution probably is from "smooth" (c.1300), to "slim, slender; of light texture," hence "not good or strong; insubstantial, trifling, inferior, insignificant" (early 14c.). Meaning "small in amount" is from 1520s. Sense of German cognate schlecht developed from "smooth, plain, simple" to "bad, mean, base," and as it did it was replaced in the original senses by schlicht, a back-formation from schlichten "to smooth, to plane," a derivative of schlecht in the old sense [Klein].


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