A trifle is something that's totally unimportant. If your friend is freaking out over which poster to buy and you call her dilemma a trifle, you're saying she shouldn't get so worked up over nothing.

Trifle comes from the Middle English trufle, meaning "fraud, joke, trick." You'll usually hear it used to mean "insignificant, trivial." If you write a little ditty to sing at a birthday party, you could say it's just a trifle. As a verb, trifle means "toy with, waste." If you play with someone's feelings without seriously meaning anything, you are trifling with his affection. Trifle is also a sweet, sticky cake. Don't trifle the day away dreaming about trifle. Make some!

Definitions of trifle
  1. noun
    a detail that is considered insignificant
    synonyms: technicality, triviality
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    type of:
    detail, item, point
    an isolated fact that is considered separately from the whole
  2. noun
    something of small importance
    synonyms: small beer, trivia, triviality
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    bagatelle, fluff, frippery, frivolity
    something of little value or significance
    type of:
    object, physical object
    a tangible and visible entity; an entity that can cast a shadow
  3. noun
    a slight but appreciable amount
    synonyms: hint, jot, mite, pinch, soupcon, speck, tinge, touch
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    a pinch of smokeless tobacco inhaled at a single time
    type of:
    small indefinite amount, small indefinite quantity
    an indefinite quantity that is below average size or magnitude
  4. verb
    consider not very seriously
    synonyms: dally, play
    dally, flirt, play, toy
    behave carelessly or indifferently
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    type of:
    consider, deal, look at, take
    take into consideration for exemplifying purposes
  5. verb
    act frivolously
    synonyms: frivol
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    type of:
    act, behave, do
    behave in a certain manner; show a certain behavior; conduct or comport oneself
  6. verb
    waste time; spend one's time idly or inefficiently
  7. noun
    a cold pudding made of layers of sponge cake spread with fruit or jelly; may be decorated with nuts, cream, or chocolate
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    tipsy cake
    a trifle soaked in wine and decorated with almonds and candied fruit
    type of:
    pud, pudding
    (British) the dessert course of a meal (`pud' is used informally)
Word Family

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