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less / les/ • adj. & pron. a smaller amount of; not as much: [as adj.] the less time spent there, the better [as pron.] storage is less of a problem than it used to be ready in less than an hour. ∎  fewer in number: [as adj.] short hair presented less problems than long hair [as pron.] a population of less than 200,000. • adj. archaic of lower rank or importance: James the Less. • adv. to a smaller extent; not so much: he listened less to the answer than to Kate's voice that this is a positive stereotype makes it no less a stereotype. ∎  (less than) far from; certainly not: Mitch looked less than happy the data was less than ideal. • prep. before subtracting (something); minus: $900,000 less tax. PHRASES: in less than no time inf. very quickly or soon. less and less at a continually decreasing rate. much (or still) less used to introduce something as being even less likely or suitable than something else already mentioned: what woman would consider a date with him, much less a marriage? no less used to suggest, often ironically, that something is surprising or impressive: Peter cooked dinner—fillet steak and champagne, no less. ∎  (no less than) used to emphasize a surprisingly large amount. ORIGIN: Old English lǣssa, of Germanic origin; related to Old Frisian lēssa, from an Indo-European root shared by Greek loisthos ‘last.’

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less less is more something simple often makes the most impact. The saying is recorded from the mid 19th century, and is found first in Robert Browning's poem ‘Andrea del Sarto’ (1855). More recently, it has been associated with the architect and designer Mies van der Rohe (1886–1969). In the 1960s the American architect Robert Venturi (1925– ) reworked the saying to less is a bore.

See also more haste, less speed.

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less OE. lǣssa = OFris. lēssa :- Gmc. *laisizō, f. *laisiz (whence OE. lǣs adv.), compar. formation on *laisa- :- IE. *loiso (cf. Gr. loîsthos last, and LEAST.
Hence lessen vb. XIV (-EN5). lesser XIII (-ER5); double compar.

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LèsS Licencié ès sciences (French: Bachelor of Science)

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LESS least-cost estimating and scheduling

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