verb [ with obj. ] make (someone or something) seem unimportant: this is not to belittle his role | she felt belittled.

DERIVATIVES belittlement noun, belittler noun

ORIGIN late 18th cent.: a coinage of Thomas Jefferson originally meaning ‘diminish in size, make small’; the current sense dates from the very end of the 18th century.

« verb [ with obj. »

A quote saved on Feb. 26, 2013.


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