follow Dictionary.com

Know these essential literary terms?

molehill

[mohl-hil] /ˈmoʊlˌhɪl/
noun
1.
a small mound or ridge of earth raised up by a mole or moles burrowing under the ground.
Idioms
2.
make a mountain out of a molehill, to exaggerate a minor difficulty.
Origin
late Middle English
1400-1450
1400-50; late Middle English; see mole1, hill
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for molehill
  • Conscience often stops at a molehill and leaps over a mountain.
  • If you've ever driven a remote-controlled car into a molehill, you can understand the rover's predicament.
  • Making a mountain out of a molehill does exactly the opposite of its intent.
  • Cosmology, in other words, is a mountain of theory built on a molehill of evidence.
  • But the capital taken out of the industry through cash takeovers is a molehill compared with the mountain needing to be eroded.
  • At its center is a four-inch rise, a veritable molehill compared with the nearby mountains.
  • Have you ever heard of the saying turning a molehill into a mountain.
  • The way to make a mountain out of a molehill is to keep adding dirt.
  • The current crisis will subside soon, so don't turn a molehill into a mountain.
  • Put your ear on a molehill, and you might hear the little tunneler's tummy growl.
British Dictionary definitions for molehill

molehill

/ˈməʊlˌhɪl/
noun
1.
the small mound of earth thrown up by a burrowing mole
2.
make a mountain out of a molehill, to exaggerate an unimportant matter out of all proportion
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for molehill
n.

also mole-hill, mid-15c., from mole (2) + hill (n.).

To much amplifying thinges yt. be but small, makyng mountaines of Molehils. [John Foxe, "Acts and Monuments," 1570]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Idioms and Phrases with molehill
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for molehill

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for molehill

13
16
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with molehill