verb (used without object), tumbled, tumbling.
to fall helplessly down, end over end, as by losing one's footing, support, or equilibrium; plunge headlong: to tumble down the stairs.
to roll end over end, as in falling: The stones tumbled down the hill.
to fall or decline rapidly; drop: Prices on the stock market tumbled today.
to perform gymnastic feats of skill and agility, as leaps or somersaults.
to fall suddenly from a position of power or authority; suffer overthrow: As one dictator tumbles, another is rising to take his place.
to fall in ruins, as from age or decay; collapse; topple: The walls of the old mansion tumbled down upon the intruders.
to roll about by turning one way and another; pitch about; toss.
to stumble or fall (usually followed by over ): to tumble over a sled.
to go, come, get, etc., in a hasty and confused way: The people tumbled out of the theater. He tumbled hurriedly into his clothes.
Informal. to understand or become aware of some fact or circumstance (often followed by to ): He finally tumbled to what they were doing.
Rocketry. (of a missile) to rotate without control end over end.
verb (used with object), tumbled, tumbling.
to cause to fall or roll end over end; throw over or down.
to throw or toss about; cause disarray, as in handling or searching.
to put in a disordered or rumpled condition.
to throw, cast, put, send, etc., in a precipitate, hasty, or rough manner.
to cause to fall from a position of authority or power; overthrow; topple: They tumbled him from his throne.
to cause to fall or collapse in ruins: The wreckers tumbled the walls of the building.
to subject to the action of a tumbling box.
an act of tumbling or falling.
a gymnastic or acrobatic feat.
an accidental fall; spill.
a drop in value, as of stocks.
a fall from a position of power or authority: The great director took a tumble when he was replaced by a newcomer.
a response indicating interest, affection, etc.: She wouldn't give me a tumble.
tumbled condition; disorder or confusion.
a confused heap: a tumble of papers, ashes, pens, and keys on the desk.
Chiefly New England. a haycock.
take a tumble to, Australian Slang. to come to understand.

1250–1300; Middle English tum(b)len to dance in acrobatic style (cognate with Dutch tuimelen, Low German tummeln), frequentative of Middle English tomben, Old English tumbian, (cognate with Old Norse tumba, akin to Old High German tūmōn to reel (perhaps < OLG); compare French tomber to fall < Gmc); see -le

untumbled, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
tumble (ˈtʌmbəl)
vb (usually foll by about)
1.  to fall or cause to fall, esp awkwardly, precipitately, or violently
2.  to roll or twist, esp in playing: the kittens tumbled about on the floor
3.  (intr) to perform leaps, somersaults, etc
4.  to go or move in a heedless or hasty way
5.  (tr) to polish (gemstones) in a tumbler
6.  (tr) to disturb, rumple, or toss around: to tumble the bedclothes
7.  the act or an instance of tumbling
8.  a fall or toss
9.  an acrobatic feat, esp a somersault
10.  a decrease in value, number, etc: stock markets have taken a tumble
11.  a state of confusion
12.  a confused heap or pile: a tumble of clothes
[Old English tumbian, from Old French tomber; related to Old High German tūmōn to turn]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

c.1300, "to perform as an acrobat," also "to fall down," perhaps from a frequentative form of O.E. tumbian "dance about," of unknown origin. Related to M.L.G. tummelen "to turn, dance," Du. tuimelen "to tumble," O.H.G. tumon, Ger. taumeln "to turn, reel." The noun is recorded from 1716. Tumble-down (1791)
originally meant "habitually falling down" and was used first of horses; sense of "in a dilapidated condition" is recorded from 1818. Tumble-weed is attested from 1887.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases


see rough and tumble.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
While autumn leaves tumble from trees this fall, another natural wonder is
  soaring overhead.
These layers tumble and fall in a giant block, or slab.
Meanwhile the atoms and molecules that make up your body incessantly tumble,
  vibrate or collide with one another.
Sure, they're also tumble, but the roughness in this case is a measure of their
Idioms & Phrases
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