What word or phrase does your mother always say?


[mahyld] /maɪld/
adjective, milder, mildest.
amiably gentle or temperate in feeling or behavior toward others.
characterized by or showing such gentleness, as manners or speech:
a mild voice.
not cold, severe, or extreme, as air or weather:
mild breezes.
not sharp, pungent, or strong:
a mild flavor.
not acute or serious, as disease:
a mild case of flu.
gentle or moderate in force or effect:
mild penalties.
soft; pleasant:
mild sunshine.
moderate in intensity, degree, or character:
mild regret.
British Dialect. comparatively soft and easily worked, as soil, wood, or stone.
Obsolete. kind or gracious.
British. beer that has a blander taste than bitter.
Origin of mild
before 900; Middle English, Old English milde; cognate with German mild; akin to Greek malthakós soft
Related forms
mildly, adverb
mildness, noun
overmild, adjective
semimild, adjective
semimildness, noun
1. soft, pleasant. See gentle. 3. temperate, moderate, clement. 4. bland.
1. forceful. 3. severe. 6. harsh. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for mildly
  • They are mildly venomous snakes, but their tiny, fixed rear fangs make them harmless to humans.
  • mildly insulated in the seat area for protection against cold lift chairs.
  • By removing the frogs in mildly infested areas, people can help keep them from spreading-and keep their own gardens frog free.
  • The live chat is mildly interesting, but apparently is heavily moderated so that only questions perceived as good get through.
  • It turned out that stress is only mildly related and simple antibiotics cures must ulcers.
  • By some measures, it even appears to be mildly attracted to the smell of felines.
  • You'll look mildly ludicrous holding this giant smartphone up to your ear, but voice performance is decent.
  • Newspapers were mildly concerned about falling circulation rather than in an all-out panic about imminent collapse.
  • But the idea that companies maximize short term profits at the expense of long-term returns is, to put it mildly, unproven.
  • Still in the running might have been putting it mildly.
British Dictionary definitions for mildly


(of a taste, sensation, etc) not powerful or strong; bland: a mild curry
gentle or temperate in character, climate, behaviour, etc
not extreme; moderate: a mild rebuke
feeble; unassertive
(Brit) draught beer, of darker colour than bitter and flavoured with fewer hops
Derived Forms
mildly, adverb
mildness, noun
Word Origin
Old English milde; compare Old Saxon mildi, Old Norse mildr
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for mildly

Old English mildelice "graciously, affably, kindly;" see mild + -ly (2). Phrase to put it mildly is attested from 1929.



Old English milde "gentle, merciful," from Proto-Germanic *milthjaz- (cf. Old Norse mildr, Old Saxon mildi, Old Frisian milde, Middle Dutch milde, Dutch mild, Old High German milti, German milde "mild," Gothic mildiþa "kindness"), from PIE *meldh-, from root *mel- "soft," with derivatives referring to soft or softened materials (cf. Greek malthon "weakling," myle "mill;" Latin molere "to grind;" Old Irish meldach "tender;" Sanskrit mrdh "to neglect," also "to be moist"). Originally of persons and powers; of the weather from c.1400, of disease from 1744. Also in Old English as an adverb, "mercifully, graciously."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Idioms and Phrases with mildly


The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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