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[an inarticulate expression resembling a snort; spelling pronunciation huhmf] /an inarticulate expression resembling a snort; spelling pronunciation hʌmf/
(used to indicate disbelief, contempt, etc.)
verb (used with or without object)
to utter by or as if by expressing “humph.”.
Origin of humph
1675-85 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for humph
Historical Examples
  • humph, yes,” said Mr Reardon, with his fingers to his lips.

    Blue Jackets George Manville Fenn
  • (Quietly smoking) That's a white man; he calls that fun: humph!

    Moby Dick; or The Whale Herman Melville
  • There is no virtue save under a beaver with a broad brim, humph!

    Lady Eureka, v. 2 (of 3) Robert Folkestone Williams
  • His only comments on the disclosure of kinship were a "humph!"

    Thankful's Inheritance Joseph C. Lincoln
  • humph, I suppose you know they grow on sewers and people who eat them die of ptomaine poisoning?

    Fanny Goes to War Pat Beauchamp
  • Egbert finds the climate there agrees with him, I suppose—— humph!

    Fair Harbor Joseph Crosby Lincoln
  • He read the two ill-covered pages twice and again before he threw it down with an angry "humph!"

    It Never Can Happen Again William De Morgan
  • For instance, to-night his spite got a little too much for him and he said: 'humph!'

    Galusha the Magnificent Joseph C. Lincoln
  • humph; you should have reminded her that I purchased an indulgence some weeks ago.

    The Eyes of the World Harold Bell Wright
  • And the colored man replied "humph, he ain't got no license."

    Mark Twain's Speeches Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)
British Dictionary definitions for humph


/spelling pron hʌmf/
an exclamation of annoyance, dissatisfaction, scepticism, etc
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
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Word Origin and History for humph

as a grunting sound of disdain, etc., from 1815.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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