|Origin:||merus 'pure, unmixed'|
mere1 W3 superlative merest [only before noun, no comparative]
used to emphasize how small or unimportant something or someone is:
She lost the election by a mere 20 votes.
He's a mere child.
It can't be a mere coincidence that they left at the same time.
used to emphasize that something which is small or not extreme has a big effect or is important:
The merest little noise makes him nervous.
The mere thought of food made her feel sick.
The mere fact that the talks are continuing is a positive sign.