pygmy

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Pyg·my

also Pig·my (pĭg′mē)
n. pl. Pyg·mies also Pig·mies
1. Greek Mythology A member of a race of dwarfs.
2. also pygmy A member of any of various peoples, especially of equatorial Africa and parts of Southeast Asia, having an average height less than 5 feet (1.5 meters).
3. pygmy
a. An individual of unusually small size.
b. An individual considered to be of little or no importance: political pygmies.
adj.
1. also pygmy Of or relating to the Pygmies.
2. pygmy
a. Unusually or atypically small.
b. Unimportant; trivial.

[Middle English pigmie, from Latin Pygmaeī, the Pygmies, from Greek Pugmaioi, from pugmē, cubit, fist; see peuk- in Indo-European roots.]
Usage Note: From an anthropological point of view, a pygmy is a member of any of various African, Asian, or South American peoples whose average height is less than five feet. As an ethnic term, however, Pygmy is used more exclusively of the peoples inhabiting the forests of equatorial Africa in what is now the Democratic Republic of the Congo and surrounding countries. Many people consider it offensive to refer to others by a name that identifies them in terms of a physical trait and would prefer to use an alternative, if one existed. But the indigenous names of these peoples—such as Aka, Twa, and Efe—are unfamiliar to most Americans, and none of them can be used as a comprehensive term for all such groups, even in central Africa. Thus Pygmy is still in general use, although sometimes qualified by "so-called" to indicate dissatisfaction with a term that strikes many as inherently derogatory.

pygmy

(ˈpɪɡmɪ) or

pigmy

n, pl -mies
1. (Medicine) an abnormally undersized person
2. something that is a very small example of its type
3. a person of little importance or significance
4. (modifier) of very small stature or size
[C14 pigmeis the Pygmies, from Latin Pygmaeus a Pygmy, from Greek pugmaios undersized, from pugmē fist]
pygmaean, pygmean adj

Pygmy

(ˈpɪɡmɪ) or

Pigmy

n, pl -mies
(Peoples) a member of one of the dwarf peoples of Equatorial Africa, noted for their hunting and forest culture

Pyg•my

or Pigmy

(ˈpɪg mi)

n., pl. -mies,
adj. n.
1.
a. a member of any of several small-statured peoples of Africa, esp. the forested regions of central Africa.
b. a Negrito of SE Asia, or of the Andaman or Philippine islands.
2. (l.c.) a small or dwarfish person.
3. (l.c.) anything very small of its kind.
4. (l.c.) a person of small importance or lacking in some important quality, attribute, etc.
adj.
5. (sometimes l.c.) of or pertaining to the Pygmies.
6. (l.c.) of very small size, capacity, power, etc.
[1350–1400; Middle English pigmēis, pl. of pigmē < Latin Pygmaeus < Greek pygmaîos dwarfish, a member of a legendary race of dwarflike people =pygm(ḗ) distance from elbow to knuckles + -aios adj. suffix]
pyg′moid, adj.
pyg′my•ism, n.
syn: See dwarf.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.pygmy - an unusually small individualpygmy - an unusually small individual  
small person - a person of below average size
2.Pygmy - any member of various peoples having an average height of less than five feet
small person - a person of below average size

pygmy

also pigmy
adjective
Translations
Pygmej
pygmæ
kääpiöpygmi
pigmeus
pygmÿi
pigmėjas
pigmejs
Pygmej
Pigme

pygmy

[ˈpɪgmɪ]
A. Npigmeo/a m/f (fig) → enano/a m/f
B. CPDpigmeo (fig) → miniatura, minúsculo

pygmy

[ˈpɪgmi]
npygmée m/f
modif [goat, hippopotamus] → nain(e)

pygmy

, pigmy
n
PygmyPygmäe m
(= small person, also fig) → Zwerg m
adj
PygmyPygmäen-; Pygmy tribePygmäenvolk nt
Zwerg-; pygmy goatZwergziege f

pygmy

[ˈpɪgmɪ] npigmeo/a

pygmy,

pigmy

(ˈpigmi) plural ˈpygmies ~ˈpigmies noun
a member of an African race of very small people.
References in classic literature ?
This Giant and these Pygmies being children of the same mother(that is to say, our good old Grandmother Earth), were all brethren, and dwelt together in a very friendly and affectionate manner, far, far off, in the middle of hot Africa.
Among the Pygmies, I suppose, if one of them grew to the height of six or eight inches, he was reckoned a prodigiously tall man.
Here the Pygmies used to plant wheat and other kinds of grain, which, when it grew up and ripened, overshadowed these tiny people as the pines, and the oaks, and the walnut and chestnut trees overshadow you and me, when we walk in our own tracts of woodland.
Now these funny Pygmies, as I told you before, had a Giant for their neighbor and brother, who was bigger, if possible, than they were little.
The Pygmies loved to talk with Antaeus; and fifty times a day, one or another of them would turn up his head, and shout through the hollow of his fists, "Halloo, brother Antaeus
And, on their parts, the Pygmies loved Antaeus with as much affection as their tiny hearts could hold.
For verily Epaphus was the child of the almighty Son of Cronos, and from him sprang the dark Libyans, and high-souled Aethiopians, and the Underground-folk and feeble Pygmies.
43: No one would accuse Hesiod of ignorance though he speaks of the Half-dog people and the Great-Headed people and the Pygmies.
The Tharks were having their hands full in the center of the room, and I began to realize that nothing short of a miracle could save Dejah Thoris and myself, when I saw Tars Tarkas surging through the crowd of pygmies that swarmed about him.
Shall a man go and hang himself because he belongs to the race of pygmies, and not be the biggest pygmy that he can?
You stalk amongst a world of pygmies a veritable giant, the adored of women, the envied of men
and sure enough, far up, on the loftiest terraces of the Grand Plateau, the three pygmies appeared, climbing with remarkable vigor and spirit.