Sparse is word conveying a very simple sentiment: that of scarcity and shortage. For example,

  1. Rain and trees are sparse in a desert.
  2. Food is sparse is draught hit areas.
  3. Life forms are sparse in the arctic region.
  4. Time is sparse when one works in the modern day corporate world.

Each of the above conveys the sentiment of shortage.

The dictionary definitions for Sparse are as follows:
1. Occurring, growing, or settled at widely spaced intervals; not thick or dense. (adjective)

Another word that is used in a similar way in the paragraph is iota. Iota meansA tiny or scarcely detectable amount’. It has another meaning: DO LOOK IT UP!

PLEASE NOTE:
The following is an extract from The Guardian used for educational purposes:  ‘It is over 40 years since the tiger came to tea, and two generations have now grown up on this and other Judith Kerr tales, and – with the books still selling well – a third is in the making. Her drawings spring from the page, and fit beautifully with sparse words which relay everything that needs to be said, and not one iota more. She launches into incredible imaginative flights: the idea of the tiger who drops by unexpectedly, and eats a family out of house and home, grew out of an idle daydream.’

Read further on:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/jun/16/in-praise-of-judith-kerr

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