Russian

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Etymology

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Inherited from Old East Slavic малъ (malŭ), from Proto-Slavic *malъ, from Proto-Indo-European *(s)mal-, *(s)mel-, whence English small.

Pronunciation

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  • IPA(key): [ˈmaɫɨj]
  • Audio:(file)

Adjective

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ма́лый (mályj) (comparative (по)ме́ньше, superlative мале́йший or ме́ньший)

  1. small, little
  2. short

Usage notes

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  • The short form should not be conflated with the adjective мал (mal, too small), which has lexicalized as a short-form-only adjective in its own right.
  • A special short form is found in the expression от ма́ла до вели́ка (ot mála do velíka, all ages, literally from small to big). Here, ма́ла and вели́ка are old short genitives.
  • A special short form is found in the expression ку́ча мала́ (kúča malá, pile of people, disorderly heap, literally small pile). Here, мала́ is an old short feminine attributive adjective.
  • A special short form is found in the expression мал мала́ ме́ньше (mal malá ménʹše, one (child, object, etc.) smaller than the next, literally small smaller). Here, мал (masculine) and мала́ (feminine) are old short attributive adjectives.

Declension

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Derived terms

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Noun

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ма́лый (mályjm anim (genitive ма́лого, nominative plural ма́лые, genitive plural ма́лых)

  1. fellow, guy, chap
    Synonyms: па́рень (párenʹ), ю́ноша m (júnoša)

Declension

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