What does fumble mean?

Definitions for fumble
ˈfʌm bəlfum·ble

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word fumble.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. fumble, muffverb

    (sports) dropping the ball

  2. grope, fumbleverb

    feel about uncertainly or blindly

    "She groped for her glasses in the darkness of the bedroom"

  3. fumble, blunderverb

    make one's way clumsily or blindly

    "He fumbled towards the door"

  4. fumbleverb

    handle clumsily

  5. botch, bodge, bumble, fumble, botch up, muff, blow, flub, screw up, ball up, spoil, muck up, bungle, fluff, bollix, bollix up, bollocks, bollocks up, bobble, mishandle, louse up, foul up, mess up, fuck upverb

    make a mess of, destroy or ruin

    "I botched the dinner and we had to eat out"; "the pianist screwed up the difficult passage in the second movement"

  6. fumbleverb

    drop or juggle or fail to play cleanly a grounder

    "fumble a grounder"


  1. fumblenoun

    A ball etc. that has been dropped

  2. fumbleverb

    To idly touch or nervously handle

  3. fumbleverb

    To grope awkwardly in trying to find something

  4. fumbleverb

    To blunder uncertainly

  5. fumbleverb

    To drop a ball or a baton etc.

  6. Etymology: Origin uncertain; perhaps from a Scandinavian source. Compare Old Norse falma, Swedish fumla, Danish fumle, German fummeln.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. To Fumbleverb

    To manage aukwardly.

    As many farewels as be stars in heav’n,
    With distinct breath and consign’d kisses to them,
    He fumbles up all in one loose adieu. William Shakespeare.

    His greasy bald-pate choir
    Came fumbling o’er the heads, in such an agony,
    They told ’em false for fear. John Dryden, Spanish Fryar.

  2. To FUMBLEverb

    Etymology: fommelen, Dutch.

    Our mechanick theists will have their atoms never once to have fumbled in these their motions, nor to have produced any inept system. Ralph Cudworth.

    Am not I a friend to help you out? You would have been fumbling half an hour for this excuse. John Dryden, Spanish Fryar.

    I saw him fumble with the sheets, and play with flowers, and smile upon his finger’s end. William Shakespeare, Henry V.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Fumbleverb

    to feel or grope about; to make awkward attempts to do or find something

  2. Fumbleverb

    to grope about in perplexity; to seek awkwardly; as, to fumble for an excuse

  3. Fumbleverb

    to handle much; to play childishly; to turn over and over

  4. Fumbleverb

    to handle or manage awkwardly; to crowd or tumble together

  5. Etymology: [Akin to D. fommelen to crumple, fumble, Sw. fumla to fusuble, famla to grope, Dan. famle to grope, fumble, Icel. falme, AS. folm palm of the hand. See Feel, and cf. Fanble, Palm.]


  1. Fumble

    A fumble in American and Canadian football occurs when a player, who has possession and control of the ball loses it before being downed or scoring. By rule, it is any act other than passing, kicking or successful handing that results in loss of player possession. A fumble may be forced by a defensive player who either grabs or punches the ball or butts the ball with his helmet. A fumbled ball may be recovered and advanced by either team. It is one of three events that can cause a turnover, where possession of the ball can change during play. Under American rules a fumble may be confused with a muff. A muff occurs where a player drops a ball that he does not have possession of, such as while attempting to catch a lateral pass or improperly fielding a kicking play such as a punt. Ball security is the ability of a player to maintain control over the football during play and thus avoid a fumble.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Fumble

    fum′bl, v.i. to grope about awkwardly: to handle awkwardly: to stammer in speech: to find by groping.—v.t. to manage awkwardly.—n. Fum′bler.—adv. Fum′blingly. [Dut. fommelen, to fumble; cf. Dan. famle, Ice. fâlma, to grope about.]

How to pronounce fumble?

How to say fumble in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of fumble in Chaldean Numerology is: 1

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of fumble in Pythagorean Numerology is: 5

Examples of fumble in a Sentence

  1. Jerry Rice:

    This may be a decision the The Buffaloes lament : A fumble on a conservative run play while trying to run out the clock with less than 30 seconds remaining until halftime. The Utes turned Jarek Broussards miscue into a 42-yard field goal by Jadon Redding as time expired to give the offense a little confidence boost. Ty Jordan shined in a matchup between two highly touted tailbacks. The freshman finished with 147 yards rushing. His counterpart, Broussard, started slow but finished with 80 yards, which was well below his 183.3 average. The Buffaloes suffered a huge blow in the first half when they lost linebacker Nate Landman to what could be a season-ending ankle injury. Using a scooter and wearing a leg brace, the emotional leader of the team returned to the sideline. His absence was felt in the second half. Jerry Rice gave The Buffaloes a 14-7 lead late in the first half with Colorados first punt return for a score since Sept. 9, 2017. Jerry Rice also scored on a bubble screen to put The Buffaloes up 21-10 moments in the the third quarter. The last Colorado player to record a TD on both a reception and a return( punt or kickoff) in the same game was Walter Stanley against Texas Tech on Sept. 12, 1981, according to the school. Rices feat felt bittersweet in light of the loss. Kind of hurts.

  2. Filmmaker Evan Briggs:

    It's something that you or I could do in 30 seconds flat, and watching them both try to fumble through with limited dexterity was kind of painful but sweet because they really needed each other to make it happen, you could tell the kids felt, we're doing this together, and we're helping each other, and it's not yet another situation where I'm not big enough.

  3. James Robinson:

    When [a fumble] happens and you’re out for that long, you’ve gotta feel that way, i was just waiting my turn to get back in the game and it didn’t really come until the third quarter.

  4. Penn State coach James Franklin:

    THE TAKEAWAY Penn State : The mistakes proved costly. Penn State coach James Franklin will be on major clean-up duty this week after seeing three red-zone possessions end without points, three missed field goals, two interceptions, one lost fumble, a muffed punt and a fumbled kickoff return in addition to Fords late TD run and the late defensive breakdowns. Indiana : This victory is a huge step for the program. Allen know the Hoosiers need to start beating ranked teams more consistently, and this one came on a day the defense played reasonably well and the offense managed only 221 yards 19:35 of possession time. POLL IMPLICATIONS Penn State will slip in the Top 25, perhaps precipitously. The defense played well but broke down late while the offense and special teams werent anywhere near championship caliber. Its turnovers and penalties.

  5. Jim Davis/The:

    We met in the hallway as we were passing before the interview process was going to start, i said ‘Hey’ and introduced myself and everything. He looked me in the eye and said, ‘There’s one thing. It was a fumble.’ So Raider Nation, if you’re worried, he’s already come over to the dark side.

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Translations for fumble

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • تلمسArabic
  • тършувам, бърникам, изпускамBulgarian
  • fummelnGerman
  • buscar a tientas, perder el balonSpanish
  • sählätä, hapuilla, munata, hamuilla, möhlätäFinnish
  • tâtonner, tripoterFrench
  • farfugliare, balbettare, giocherellare, annaspare, armeggiare, frugareItalian
  • 探り回す, いじり回すJapanese
  • нащупывать, шарить, теребить, мямлить, мятьRussian

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    restricted to a particular condition of life
    • A. demolish
    • B. interrogate
    • C. obligate
    • D. blur

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