Quick answer
"De mayor" is a phrase which is often translated as "of greater", and "menor" is an adjective which is often translated as "smaller". Learn more about the difference between "de mayor" and "menor" below.
de mayor
A phrase is a group of words commonly used together (e.g once upon a time).
1. (when you become an adult)
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
Yo de mayor quiero ser famoso.I want to be a celebrity when I grow up.
¿Qué quieres ser de mayor? - Quiero ser bombero.What do you want to be when you grow up? - I want to be a firefighter.
2. (of superior or larger)
a. of greater
Este puesto es de mayor responsabilidad que el que ocupa ahora.This is a position of greater responsibility than the one you hold now.
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
En mi opinión, estos son los temas de mayor interés de los tratados en el congreso.In my opinion, these are the most interesting topics among those addressed at the conference.
Necesitamos un tablón de mayor tamaño.We need a bigger plank.
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An adjective is a word that describes a noun (e.g. the big dog).
1. (comparative)
a. smaller (in size)
Tengo que comprar una talla menor de pantalón.I need to buy these pants in a smaller size.
b. younger (in age)
Ella es menor que yo.She is younger than I am.
c. under (a certain age)
Los niños menores de 12 años no pagan.Children under 12 don't pay.
d. lower (in number, value)
Di un número menor de 15.Say a number lower than 15.
e. lesser (in quantity, importance)
La contaminación afecta a las urbes y, en menor medida, también a las zonas rurales.Pollution affects the cities and, to a lesser extent, rural areas too.
2. (superlative)
a. smallest (in size)
Dame el menor tomate que tengas, por favor.Give me the smallest tomato you have, please.
b. youngest (in age)
¿Cómo se llama tu hijo menor?What's the name of your youngest son?
c. lowest (in number, value)
De todas estas, ¿cuál es la cifra menor?Of all these, which is the lowest figure?
d. least (in quantity, importance)
Iba con retraso, pero ese era el menor de mis problemas.I was running late, but that was the least of my problems.
3. (minimal)
a. slightest
No te preocupes; no tiene la menor importancia.Don't worry; it doesn't have the slightest importance.
4. (secondary)
a. minor
La exposición incluye obras menores de Picasso.The exhibition contains minor works by Picasso.
5. (music)
a. minor
Mi pieza favorita de Mozart es la Gran Misa en do menor.Mi favorite of Mozart's works is the Great Mass in C minor.
This means that the noun can be masculine or feminine, depending on the gender of person it refers to (e.g. el doctor, la doctora).
6. (underage person)
a. minor
Los menores no pueden comprar alcohol.Minors are not allowed to buy alcohol.
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