- mite: English has two words mite, although they probably share a common origin. The older, ‘tiny insect-like creature’ [OE], goes back to a prehistoric Germanic *mītōn, which was probably derived from a base meaning ‘cut’ (hence ‘something cut up small’). Dutch has the related mijt. The original meaning of mite ‘small thing’  was ‘small coin’ (as in the ‘widow’s mite’). It was used in Flanders for such a coin, worth a third of a penny, and Middle Dutch mīte was borrowed into English. It too goes back to a Germanic mītōn, which is probably the same word as produced the animated mite.
- mite (n.1)
- "tiny animal, minute arachnid," Old English mite, from Proto-Germanic *miton (cognates: Middle Dutch mite, Dutch mijt, Old High German miza, Danish mide) originally meaning perhaps "the cutter," in reference to its bite, from Proto-Germanic *mait- (cognates: Gothic maitan, Old High German meizen "to cut"), from PIE root *mai- "to cut" (see maim). Or else its original sense is "something small," and it is from PIE *mei- (2) "small," in reference to size (see minus).
- mite (n.2)
- "little bit," mid-14c., from Middle Dutch or Middle Low German mite "tiny animal," from Proto-Germanic *miton-, from PIE *mei- (2) "small" (see minus), and thus probably identical with mite (n.1). Also the name of a medieval Flemish copper coin of very small value, proverbial in English for "a very small unit of money," hence used since Wyclif to translate Latin minutum from Vulgate in Mark xii:43, itself a translation of Greek lepton. French mite (14c.) is a loan-word from Dutch.
- 1. The poor mite was so ill.
- 2. I offer a mite of comfort to him.
- 3. He is a mite taller than I.
- 4. I think if you were a woman you might feel a mite differently.
- 5. Don't feel ashamed — we don't despise the widow's mite , and, as they say, every penny helps.
- 不用觉得不好意思——我们不会瞧不起微薄但可贵的捐赠的, 正如人们说的, 每一文钱都会起作用.
[ mite 造句 ]