many a mickle makes a muckle
- (Britain) A lot of small amounts, put together, become a large amount.
Mickle and muckle both traditionally meant "a large amount", hence the somewhat more logical variant "many a little makes a mickle". With the decline in the use of Scots the Scots phrase "Mony a pickle/puckle maks a mickle/muckle" became corrupted to "mony a mickle maks a muckle", hence, in Scottish English, under the influence of that, "mickle" has come to be perceived as "a small amount".
- every little helps
- take care of the pennies and the pounds will take care of themselves
- a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step
- little and often fills the purse
- many a little makes a mickle
- ^ Many a Mickle (Cheshire, 1953), page 12