\ ˈfyü How to pronounce few (audio) \

Definition of few

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: not many persons or things few were present few of his stories are true



Definition of few (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : consisting of or amounting to only a small number one of our few pleasures
2 : at least some but indeterminately small in number used with a caught a few fish
few and far between
: few in number and infrequently met : rare

Definition of few (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : a small number of units or individuals a few of them
2 : a special limited number the discriminating few

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Other Words from few


fewness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for few

Synonyms: Noun, plural in construction

Antonyms: Noun, plural in construction

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Examples of few in a Sentence

Adjective He caught fewer fish than the rest of us. There are fewer children at the school this year. Not many people came, but the few people who did enjoyed themselves.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Rajabian wasn’t able to share much of the album with Rolling Stone, but did send us a few brief clips via WhatsApp featuring dark, dramatic strings and soaring, trilling vocals. Brenna Ehrlich, Rolling Stone, "‘I Am Doomed to Produce Music’: Inside One Iranian Artist’s Fight for Creative Freedom," 5 May 2021 This messy, embarrassing result, which will satisfy few across the political spectrum, must come as a shock to Facebook. Jacob Silverman, The New Republic, "Even Facebook’s Handpicked “Supreme Court” Thinks Its Policies Are a Joke," 5 May 2021 Black assistants were asked by HR to pose as agent-trainees because there were so few people of color in the program, according to 10 former employees. Los Angeles Times, "Top Hollywood talent agency accused of tolerating sexual harassment, misconduct," 5 May 2021 Read through this collection of natural beauty quotes for her and choose a few that speak to you. Southern Living Editors, Southern Living, "25 Natural Beauty Quotes To Celebrate Confidence," 5 May 2021 We were allowed back into the house to grab a few personal items. Chloe Melas, CNN, "A house fire changed my life. Here's how two minutes could help save yours," 4 May 2021 With so few meteors visible each hour, a dark sky is imperative. Katherine Rosenberg-douglas, chicagotribune.com, "Meteor shower visibility should peak early Wednesday. Here are 5 ways Chicagoans can maximize chances of ‘catching’ the show.," 4 May 2021 Business owners have been raising alarm about the state of downtown since last summer, but only a relative few permanently closed last year. Jamie Goldberg, oregonlive, "Goldmark Jewelers to close after 46 years as other downtown business owners contemplate their futures," 4 May 2021 The leak all but confirmed many recent Fold 3 and Flip 3 rumors, including a few exciting details about Samsung’s 2021 foldable phones. Chris Smith, BGR, "This is the final design of the Galaxy Z Fold 3, says leaker," 4 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun, plural in construction The combo pairs late-season heli-skiing with fishing for king salmon, an impressive Alaska double few can claim to have pulled off. Mike Campbell, Anchorage Daily News, "Got 1, 2 or 3 days to explore? Here are some fun itineraries," 28 May 2020 Only a small portion of COVID-19 patients get sick enough to require ventilation—but for the unlucky few who do, data out of China and New York City suggest upward of 80% do not recover. Jamie Ducharme, Time, "Why Ventilators May Not Be Working as Well for COVID-19 Patients As Doctors Hoped," 16 Apr. 2020 According to the Pew Research Center, more than 70 percent of Polish citizens held a favorable few of the E.U. last year, compared to 48 percent in the United Kingdom. Washington Post, "Days after Brexit becomes almost certain, Poland’s Supreme Court says that country could be at risk of leaving the E.U., too," 18 Dec. 2019 Until Kansas City’s famed stockyards closed down in 1991, the city was pretty much wall-to-wall cows and pigs, few of whom were housebroken. Scott Ostler, SFChronicle.com, "49ers fan guide to Kansas City: ‘The Soccer Capital of America’," 22 Jan. 2020 In 2015, when the party came to power, migrants — few of whom were actually trying to enter Poland — were made targets. Marc Santora, New York Times, "Poland Election: Law and Justice Party Holds on to Power, Early Returns Show," 13 Oct. 2019 But while most interior design professionals are familiar with the concept of biophilic design, many only recognize a limited few of the countless ways it can be implemented. Michelle Beganskas, Quartz, "The productivity science behind biophilia is about much more than plants," 3 Dec. 2019 This information did not leak until 2009 and there were few who allowed it to tarnish memories of the Sox’ magical championships of 2004 and 2007. BostonGlobe.com, "■ Are sports fans bothered when their teams are caught cheating?," 16 Nov. 2019 There were few of the latter, sung by Moctar, second guitarist Ahmoudou Madassane and, occasionally, bassist-producer Michael Coltun. Mark Jenkins, Washington Post, "Mdou Moctar lets his fingers do the talking during Black Cat show," 8 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'few.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of few

Pronoun, plural in construction

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun, plural in construction

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for few

Pronoun, plural in construction and Adjective

Middle English fewe, pronoun & adjective, from Old English fēawa; akin to Old High German little, Latin paucus little, pauper poor, Greek paid-, pais child, Sanskrit putra son

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Time Traveler for few

Time Traveler

The first known use of few was before the 12th century

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Statistics for few

Cite this Entry

“Few.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/few. Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for few



English Language Learners Definition of few

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: not many people or things
: some people or things
: a small number of people or things that are chosen or regarded as special or unusual in some way



English Language Learners Definition of few (Entry 2 of 2)

: not many
: not many but some


\ ˈfyü How to pronounce few (audio) \

Kids Definition of few

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: not many people or things Few were prepared to perform.


fewer; fewest

Kids Definition of few (Entry 2 of 3)

: not many but some I caught a few fish. They had few complaints.



Kids Definition of few (Entry 3 of 3)

: a small number of people or things A few of the students are new.

More from Merriam-Webster on few

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for few

Nglish: Translation of few for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of few for Arabic Speakers

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