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December 2013

English Expressions

Mountain out of a Molehill

“Mountain out of a Molehill”

I am not sure if I have ever seen a molehill, or perhaps I should say that if have seen a molehill, I may not have actually known that that is what it was. In case you do not know the word “mole”, a mole is something like a mouse but lives in holes, which it digs by itself, in the ground. Moles are often considered pests since they like to eat roots of plants, and they sometimes kill plants in peoples’ yards and gardens, which the people end up not being so happy about.

Anyway, moles are rather small animals, so I imagine that if a mole makes a hill (a “molehill”) from the dirt that it has dug out of the ground, it is likely to be a rather small hill. Therefore, the English expression has come about: “making a mountain out of a molehill.” It is used when one wants to say that someone is exaggerating something, that someone is making something out to be much more, for example, important, larger, more valuable, than it really is.

english expression

For example, when Kathy says that she is really concerned about not being able to pay her bills even though she and her husband both have good jobs and plenty of money, you can say that she is “making a mountain out of a molehill.” Or if David decides to go to the police because his neighbor always parks his old car on the street, you can say he is “making a mountain out of a molehill.” Try this one on your friends when you have a chance.

 

Yours Truly,

Oliver, Teaching Director of LiveEnglishClass.com