ADJ. big, great, high, huge, large, massive, vast | thick | little, small, tiny | neat, tidy | untidy
VERB + PILE place sth in/into/on, put sth in/into/on I put the letter in the envelope and placed it on the pile. I've put the books into three separate piles. | dump He dumped a pile of dirty clothes onto the floor. | add sth to Just add that application to the pile. | flick through, leaf through, look through, riffle through, shuffle through, sort through I leafed through the pile of documents until I found the one I wanted.
PREP. amid a/the ~ The money lay amid a pile of unopened letters. | behind a/the ~ He was busy behind a pile of papers on his desk. | beneath/under a/the ~ I pulled my diary from beneath a pile of files. | in a/the ~ The washing is in a pile on the floor. | on a/the ~ She closed the magazine and threw it back on the pile. | ~ of a pile of books I've got piles of work to do.
PHRASES be reduced to a pile of sth The house was reduced to a pile of rubble. | the bottom/top of the pile (figurative) The government is doing little to help those on the bottom of the social pile. | sort sth into piles I sorted the clothes into two piles.
ADV. neatly | up We piled the boxes up neatly.
PREP. against We piled sandbags against the door. | on, onto She piled food onto our plates. | on top of They piled stones on top of the mound. | with a table piled high with magazines
PHRASES piled high