A Heap Of Vs A Pile Of


- I've been having to wash a pile of clothes since this early morning.

- Instead of this, can I say "..............wash a heap of clothes..........."?

Thanks a lot!

  • ascension

    Senior Member
    English-United States
    Yes. I think generally "pile" means neatly stacked (as least as compared to heap), while "heap" is for something more disorganized.

    That said, when referring to dirty clothes either works just fine.

    Harry Batt

    Senior Member
    USA English
    One distinctive difference is that heap can be used as a measure of amount while pile can only measure amount based upon the composition of the pile. Eg., "A heap of loving is good for a marriage." "Their marriage is good because they piled on the hugs and kisses." With both words, the usage is commonly idiomatic. Each is used in many clichés. Football:Notre Dame is piling on the score. Iowa needs a heap of scoring if they are going to catch up to Minnesota in the second half.
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