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Kanji in this term
Grade: 1


Appears starting from the Muromachi period. Derived as the -na adjective construction of -i adjective 小さい (chīsai, small, little). See that entry for further details.



小さな (hiragana ちいさな, rōmaji chīsana, historical hiragana ちひさな)

  1. (of size or amount) small, little, tiny
    • 1999 February 4, “プチテンシ [Petit Angel]”, in Vol.1 (in Japanese), Konami:
      ちょこまか (うご) (こう) (げき)がなかなか ()たらない、とても (ちい)さな (てん)使 ()
      Chokomaka ugoki kōgeki ga nakanaka ataranai, totemo chīsa na tenshi.
      A tiny little angel that is very hard to hit because it moves around constantly.
    • 1999 February 4, “プチリュウ [Petit Dragon]”, in Vol.1 (in Japanese), Konami:
      とても (ちい)さなドラゴン。 (ちい)さなからだをいっぱいに使 (つか) (こう) (げき)する。
      Totemo chīsa na doragon. Chīsa na karada o ippai ni tsukai kōgeki suru.
      A tiny little dragon, but its attack packs quite a punch.
    • 1999 March 1, “ハッピー・ラヴァー [Happy Lover]”, in BOOSTER 1 (in Japanese), Konami:
       (あたま)からハートビームを () (てき)をしあわせにする、 (ちい)さな (てん)使 ()
      Atama kara hāto bīmu o dashi teki o shiawase ni suru, chīsa na tenshi.
      A little angel that brings happiness to its enemies happy by shooting happy beams out of its forehead.
    • 1999 July 22, “プチモス [Petit Moth]”, in Vol.4 (in Japanese), Konami:
       (せい) (ちょう)したらどんなムシになるか ()からない、 (ちい)さな (よう) (ちゅう)
      Seichō shitara donna mushi ni naru ka wakaranai, chīsa na yōchū.
      It is not known what kind of bug this little larva grows into.
  2. (of age) young, little

Usage notesEdit

This term may only be used to directly modify a noun. In this grammatical role, it may be used largely interchangeably with 小さい (chīsai), the -i adjective form. In predicative use, only 小さい (chīsai) may be used: あれ*小さ (are wa *chīsa da) is incorrect grammar. Also, there is no adverbial form *小さに (*chīsa ni), only the regular -ku adverbial form 小さく (chīsaku) of the -i adjective 小さい (chīsai).


Related termsEdit


  1. ^ 2006, 大辞林 (Daijirin), Third Edition (in Japanese), Tōkyō: Sanseidō, →ISBN