follow Dictionary.com

Stories We Like: Novels For Language Lovers

bumble1

[buhm-buh l] /ˈbʌm bəl/
verb (used without object), bumbled, bumbling.
1.
to bungle or blunder awkwardly; muddle:
He somehow bumbled through two years of college.
2.
to stumble or stagger.
3.
to speak in a low, stuttering, halting manner; mumble.
verb (used with object), bumbled, bumbling.
4.
to do (something) clumsily; botch.
noun
5.
an awkward blunder.
Origin
1525-1535
1525-35; perhaps blend of bungle and stumble
Related forms
bumbler, noun

bumble2

[buhm-buh l] /ˈbʌm bəl/
verb (used without object), bumbled, bumbling.
1.
to make a buzzing, humming sound, as a bee.
Origin
1350-1400; Middle English bomblen, frequentative of bomben to boom, buzz; imitative
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for bumbles

bumble1

/ˈbʌmbəl/
verb
1.
to speak or do in a clumsy, muddled, or inefficient way: he bumbled his way through his speech
2.
(intransitive) to proceed unsteadily; stumble
noun
3.
a blunder or botch
Derived Forms
bumbler, noun
bumbling, noun, adjective
Word Origin
C16: perhaps a blend of bungle + stumble

bumble2

/ˈbʌmbəl/
verb
1.
(intransitive) to make a humming sound
Word Origin
C14 bomblen to buzz, boom, of imitative origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for bumbles

bumble

v.

"to flounder, blunder," 1530s, probably of imitative origin. Related: Bumbled; bumbler; bumbling.

Bumble

"self-important petty official," 1856, from the name of the fussy, pompous, stupid beadle in Dickens' "Oliver Twist."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for bumble

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for bumbles

13
18
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for bumbles