Examples of puny in a Sentence
I wouldn't mess with him—he makes bodybuilders look puny in comparison.
We laughed at their puny attempt to trick us.
Recent Examples of puny from the Web
During the text plates, the fortepiano's sound was puny in the large theater.
At Hudson Yards, a pair of office towers will be yoked together by a multistory vertical mall that will make the Time Warner Center look puny.
Even at 4.3 million, the market is relatively puny.
Tyrannosaurus, Carnotaurus, and other puny-armed predators had it just right.
As tornadoes go, this was relatively puny, lasting for about a minute, over a track about a quarter-mile long and less than 100 feet wide.
But the implications of the case are anything but puny for Google and other tech giants.
Yet in the twenty-first century, only puny profits could be made that way.
Ninety-five years after that initial broadcast -- which was carried on a puny 10-watt signal -- WWL now broadcasts as a clear channel station on a mammoth 50,000-watt transmitter.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'puny.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of puny
Anglo-French puisné younger, weakly, literally, born afterward, from puis afterward + né born
First Known Use: circa 1577See Words from the same year
PUNY Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of puny for English Language Learners
: small and weak
: not very large, impressive, or effective
PUNY Defined for Kids
Definition of puny for Students
1 : small and weak in size or power
2 : not very impressive or effective My boss gave me a puny raise.
History for puny
In medieval French puisné, literally, “born afterward,” was used to mean “younger” when talking about two people. Borrowed into English, puisne and the phonetic spelling puny came to be used of anyone in a position of less importance than another. By the time of the playwright William Shakespeare puny no longer suggested relative rank, but had come to mean “weak” or “feeble”—a meaning the word retains today.
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