Little vs. A Little
- She showed little interest in what I said.
- I have little interest in philosophy.
- There was little chance of winning.
Before a pronoun or a determiner (the, this, my) we use little of.
- I have learned not to think little of anyone else’s beliefs.
- Could I have a little of that cheese?
Little and a little
Little has a rather negative meaning. It means hardly any. A little means some.
- Give me a little milk. (= some milk)
- I have little money. (= hardly any)
A little can be used before comparatives as a modifier.
- I feel a little better today.
- This car is a little faster than that car.
Little with adjectives
Little is not normally used to modify other adjectives or adverbs. However, a little can be used before certain adjectives and adverbs having a negative meaning.
- It was a little embarrassing.
- You are a little late.