- 1A small round mass of solid medicine for swallowing whole: an overdose of sleeping pillsMore example sentences
- He was a very bright, socially sensitive, and insightful young man whose complaint was that he could not swallow pills or capsules.
- Laxatives come as syrups, powders, and also as pills, which are swallowed or put inside the anus.
- Your doctor may also ask you if you take any medicines such as birth control pills, laxatives or diet pills.
- 1.1 (the pill) An oral contraceptive in pill form: is she on the pill?More example sentences
- This is the largest women's health study ever done and contradicts other research on the pill.
- Some women find this method disconcerting because the period they have each month while on the pill is reassurance that they haven't become pregnant.
- That occurs mainly in people who have been on the pill for more than 10 years and who smoke cigarettes.
a bitter pill (to swallow)
- An unpleasant or painful necessity (to accept).More example sentences
- ‘It is a bitter pill to swallow but it is necessary to cut back and balance the books,’ he said.
- This one is - and should be - a bitter pill to swallow.
- Eventually he murmurs ‘It's a bitter pill to swallow.’
sugar (or sweeten) the pill
- Make an unpleasant or painful necessity more palatable.More example sentences
- The ‘horrible’ truth may taste ‘bad’ but Fischer, like any funny man worth his salt, sweetens the pill.
- An increasing number of dating agencies are sweetening the pill by affecting introductions with clients who share a particular interest, but the biggest innovation for the industry has come with the internet.
- He makes no attempt to sweeten the pill by positing an upside to emotional politics or strategies designed to boost self-esteem.
late Middle English: ultimately from Latin pilula 'little ball', diminutive of pila; compare with Middle Dutch, Middle Low German pille.
- (Of knitted fabric) form small balls of fluff on its surface: synthetics can pill but otherwise wear fairly well (as adjective pilled) no matter how carefully you wash them, some sweaters end up pilled and bobblyMore example sentences
- This new fabric treatment enables the garment to resist shrinking, pilling, fading and wrinkles while remaining breathable.
- Those tiny little felt guys that I made for Amelia just before she was born have been loved a little and have ended up filthy and terribly pilled.
- The yarn pilled up a lot, and though it was soft it always looked kind of weird on me so I rarely wore it.
1960s: from the noun pill denoting a small ball of fluff, extended sense of pill1.