There are 2 main definitions of mite in English:

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mite1

Syllabification: mite
Pronunciation: /mīt
 
/

noun

A minute arachnid that has four pairs of legs when adult, related to the ticks. Many kinds live in the soil and a number are parasitic on plants or animals.
Example sentences
  • All of these arthropods are known predators of insect eggs; on at least 17 plants, adult mites were directly observed attacking eggs.
  • Dust mites are very minute arachnids (related to spiders) that live primarily on flakes of human skin.
  • But a parasitic mite, Varroa destructor, has started to wreak havoc on honeybee colonies.

Origin

Old English mīte, of Germanic origin.

More
  • Old English mīte describing a tiny arachnid related to the ticks is a word of Germanic origin. Late Middle English mite now used in phrases such as poor little mite is probably from the same Germanic word but it described, during this period, a small Flemish copper coin (from Middle Dutch mīte). The ‘small size’ is reflected in the phrase the widow's mite, which refers to Mark 12:42 ‘And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing’: although some sneered at her poor contribution it had virtue because she had given all she had.

Definition of mite in:

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There are 2 main definitions of mite in English:

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mite2

Syllabification: mite
Pronunciation: /mīt
 
/

noun

1A small child or animal, especially when regarded as an object of sympathy: the poor little mite looks half-starved
More example sentences
  • His cold has developed into full blown ‘smoker's cough’ this morning, poor little mite.
  • ‘She's just a poor little mite - I feel terrible as a person having to say this kind of thing but I didn't know what else to do I was so desperate,’ he said.
  • Poor little mite was rather disappointed when he realised it was months away yet, but it hasn't seemed to stop him asking again at regular intervals throughout the day.
2A very small amount: his teacher thought he needed a mite of discipline
More example sentences
  • And then she asks that the wedding feast be cooked without a mite of salt.
  • He's a strong, practiced businessman and never lets a mite of logic slip from his grasp.
2.1 historical A small coin, in particular a small Flemish copper coin of very low face value. See also widow's mite.

adverb

(a mite) informal Back to top  
A little; slightly: all evening he’s seemed a mite awkward
More example sentences
  • Is anyone else feeling a mite peckish just now?
  • A fair few are competent although scarcely memorable, a mite predictable, but all the books contain stories that could at least be considered for any ‘best of’ collection.
  • We shot a lot of video that night, but these clips are from late in the evening, after much of that licorice-flavored liquor had been consumed, and we're both a mite tiddly.

Origin

late Middle English (denoting a small Flemish copper coin): from Middle Dutch mīte; probably from the same Germanic word as mite1.

More
  • Old English mīte describing a tiny arachnid related to the ticks is a word of Germanic origin. Late Middle English mite now used in phrases such as poor little mite is probably from the same Germanic word but it described, during this period, a small Flemish copper coin (from Middle Dutch mīte). The ‘small size’ is reflected in the phrase the widow's mite, which refers to Mark 12:42 ‘And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing’: although some sneered at her poor contribution it had virtue because she had given all she had.

Definition of mite in:

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