lesser

1 of 2

adjective

less·​er ˈle-sər How to pronounce lesser (audio)

comparative of little entry 1

: of less size, quality, degree, or significance : of lower status

lesser

2 of 2

adverb

: less
lesser-known

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Example Sentences

Adjective The winner will receive $100; lesser amounts will be given to three runners-up. A lesser man than he might have simply given up. She agreed to plead guilty to a lesser charge.
Recent Examples on the Web
Adjective
While Liss-Riordan is widely recognized for challenging corporate giants, including Uber and Starbucks, Campbell’s record as an attorney is lesser known. Ivy Scott, BostonGlobe.com, 2 Sep. 2022 The other major but lesser-known function of fat is to provide water. The Conversation, oregonlive, 22 Aug. 2022 The other major but lesser-known function of fat is to provide water. Richard Johnson, The Conversation, 22 Aug. 2022 One of the latest is Rosebank, a distillery in the Lowland region of Scotland that is lesser known but has some excellent whisky to offer, including this new rare 31-year-old single malt. Jonah Flicker, Robb Report, 10 Aug. 2022 Getting run out of the building by Georgia is going to leave a mark, though, and could color a season-long national perception of Oregon and, to a lesser extent, the Pac-12 at large. Paul Myerberg, USA TODAY, 4 Sep. 2022 The entire performance hinged on the Weeknd and, to a lesser extent, those dancers (22 in all), who rarely called attention to themselves. Ed Masley, The Arizona Republic, 31 Aug. 2022 Sweeney gave Keeler, 73, a lesser sentence than what prosecutors were asking for based on his age, lack of criminal history and previous public service as a state legislator and Marine. The Indianapolis Star, 17 Aug. 2022 In exchange for a lesser sentence, the man agreed to contact and meet with company employees, including one who was arrested by the FBI. María Luisa Paúl, Washington Post, 20 June 2022
Adverb
The mission of this small professional theater company is to stage unconventional or lesser-known plays. Joey Morona, cleveland, 14 Sep. 2022 Narrated by Garth Brooks, the five-part docuseries celebrates the world-famous and lesser-known national parks across the U.S., from Yosemite to Big Bend National Park. Carson Burton, Variety, 9 Aug. 2022 Here are some lesser-known, but highly effective, KPIs to improve your talent acquisition process. David Moise, Forbes, 9 Aug. 2022 Though much lesser-known, Teva, an Israeli company, and its affiliates produced far more prescription opioids during the peak years of the crisis than marquee-name opioid manufacturers such as Johnson & Johnson did. New York Times, 26 July 2022 Le Marche is often dubbed a cheaper and lesser-known alternative to Tuscany. Rebecca Ann Hughes, Forbes, 15 July 2022 While perhaps lesser-known than his American contemporaries, Filgate nevertheless accrued an impressive list of accolades. Adam Benzine, Variety, 13 July 2022 Not only are national and federal holidays observed in October, but some funny, light-hearted and lesser-known celebrations are observed as well. Cameron Jenkins, Good Housekeeping, 7 July 2022 So ensuring that how marital assets and liabilities are distributed to maximize investment income and growth for the lesser-earning spouse post-divorce should be considered. Kelly Frawley And Emily Pollock, Forbes, 27 Sep. 2021 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

Adjective

13th century, in the meaning defined above

Adverb

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of lesser was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near lesser

Cite this Entry

“Lesser.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lesser. Accessed 27 Sep. 2022.

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Kids Definition

lesser 1 of 2

adjective

less·​er ˈle-sər How to pronounce lesser (audio)
: of smaller size or importance a lesser evil

lesser

2 of 2

adverb

: less entry 2
lesser-known writers

Legal Definition

lesser

adjective

less·​er ˈle-sər How to pronounce lesser (audio)
: of less size, quality, degree, or significance
specifically : of lower criminal liability
duress has been held a good defense to such lesser crimes as robbery, burglary and malicious mischief W. R. LaFave and A. W. Scott, Jr.

More from Merriam-Webster on lesser

Last Updated: 18 Sep 2022

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