The word "least" is the opposite of "most." It describes an amount that is smaller than other amounts.

  • Of the three choices, she likes the orange one the least.
  • Joe puts the least amount of effort in getting his work finished. He’s very lazy.
  • That was one of the least interesting classes I have ever taken. It was very boring.
  • Finding a new job is the least of her problems. She has many other problems to deal with.
  • The least amount of pain and suffering happened at the beginning of the war; most of the war’s devastation was felt towards the end of it.

The preposition "at" is often placed in front of "least" to form "at least." This is a kind of idiom that we use to describe some advantage despite a difficulty.

  • Tom has a difficult job. At least it’s interesting.
  • Their company went out of business. At least everyone received one final paycheck.
  • The party was held under a very cloudy sky. At least it didn’t rain.
  • He lost all of his money and his house…

man with donkey …but at least he still has his donkey.

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January 6, 2013