I know that whopper, apart from the Burger King thing, means a great lie but I want to dwell on the other meaning, mostly colloquial, indicating a "very big thing of its kind", therefore expressions like the one below reported from the Cambridge dictionary:


humorous informal something that is surprising because it is so much bigger than the usual size: My nose is pretty big, but my Dad's got a whopper.

I am wondering if the English language (American as well) has such a word but indicating the opposite: "something really small of its kind". Does whopper has an antonym of current usage?

  • Just to clarify, 'whopper' meaning a big lie is just one use of its general meaning of 'a remarkably big (anything)', and it's always colloquial (or, as your dictionary says, humorous and informal). – Kate Bunting Sep 15 '17 at 8:42
  • In reference to prevarication, the best antonym I can think of is "little white lie". – Hot Licks Sep 15 '17 at 11:43
  • @HotLicks: my question was for the other meaning...read at the end... – ealy Sep 15 '17 at 11:46

To me, "whopper" is (not counting trademarks) most strongly associated with fishing, eg in the second definition here:


2 something unusually big

The fish Mike caught was a whopper.

Sticking with that realm, you could have "tiddler" as the antonym:

  1. A small fish, especially a stickleback or minnow.

1.1. A young or unusually small person or thing. ‘she was only a little tiddler, ten years old’

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    +1 because this was the answer I'd have given if you hadn't beaten me to it. – Spagirl Nov 14 '17 at 11:17

For another fishing analogy, "something really small of its kind" might be called a minnow.

A small or insignificant person or organization.

‘the paper is a minnow in the national newspaper mass market’


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Merriam-Webster suggests:

Near Antonyms lightweight, weakling, wimp, wisp; nonentity, twerp, whippersnapper

Antonyms diminutive, dwarf, half-pint, midget, mite, peewee, pygmy (also pigmy), runt, shrimp

Personally, I'm fond of "wimpy."

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  • Just to understand, so you can say "your nose is a wimpy"? Is it completely interchangeable? – ealy Sep 15 '17 at 6:43
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    If this reference is not wrong, wimp means a weak and cowardly or unadventurous person ! So, "Your nose is a wimp" ?? Really ? – Swasti Gupta Sep 15 '17 at 7:15
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    To add to the confusion, in the UK "Wimpy" is a burger chain. – Max Williams Nov 14 '17 at 11:01
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    @MaxWilliams and again you've beaten me to it, I was all set to explain that, in a very real way, 'Wimpy' is the antonym of 'Whopper', it's the home-grown burger that we cough grew up with not the interloping transatlantic burger. Its the place where Gregory had heart-to-hearts with Maddy, its where all the rainy Saturdays of the 70s live. – Spagirl Nov 14 '17 at 11:26
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    @Spagirl, yes, I think the Wimpy brand in the UK is associated with dismal motorway service stations, and also, generally seen as being a bit crap (and failing - there can't be many left now). So, "Less of a Whopper, more of a Wimpy" could work as a jokey reference, for Brits at least. – Max Williams Nov 14 '17 at 12:04

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