One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A wooded mountain in Greece, near the coast of south-eastern Thessaly, rising to 1,548 m (5,079 ft). It was held in Greek mythology to be the home of the centaurs, and the giants were said to have piled Mounts Olympus and Ossa on its summit in their attempt to reach heaven and destroy the gods.
pile (or heap) Pelion on Ossa
Add an extra difficulty to something which is already onerous.
- ‘Looking for a hill from which to scan the territory, one does not want to pile Pelion on Ossa.’
- ‘As the Greeks would say, why pile Pelion on Ossa?’
- ‘But was it worth while to heap Pelion on Ossa, to shake the whole world, to create such a cataclysm of colour, merely to raise a smile?’
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