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Difference between Big, Small, Long, Short, Tall, Huge, and Tiny

Are you often confused while using the words Big, Small, Long, Short, Tall, Huge, and Tiny and mess them up while speaking English. Clear your confusion once and for all. In this English Grammar Lesson, Niharika will clear out your confusion between these words and help you to speak English confidently and fluently.

Big & Small

Use big and small to talk about the general size of something.

  • Elephants are big.
  • Mice are small.

With clothing and food, we use large, not big:

  • I ordered a big coffee with milk. ( Wrong)
  • I ordered a large coffee with milk.
  • “This shirt is too small for me.”
  • “What size is it?”
  • “Medium.”
  • “OK, I’ll get you a large.“

Huge & Tiny

Huge = Very big

Tiny = Very small

  • Their new house is huge! I think it has 50 rooms.
  • “Do you want any cake?”
  • “Just a tiny piece. I’m on a diet.”

Long & Short

Use long and short to talk about length (horizontal distance). You can also use long and short with time, books, words/sentences, hair, and legs:

  • The line to buy tickets for the concert is very long. There are hundreds of people waiting.
  • The movie is really long – about three hours.
  • That book is quite long – it has about 500 pages.
  • Academic writing often uses very long sentences.
  • She has short blonde hair and gorgeous long legs.

There are two ways to talk about distance (kilometers or miles):

  • The beach is far from my house.
  • The beach is a long way from my house.
  • The beach is long from my house.

Tall & Short

Use tall and short to talk about height (vertical distance) – especially with people, but sometimes also with buildings and trees.

  • My brother is really tall.
  • New York City has a lot of tall buildings.
  • There are many tall trees in the Amazon rainforest.

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