verb (used with object), be·fud·dled, be·fud·dling.

to confuse, as with glib statements or arguments: politicians befuddling the public with campaign promises.
to make stupidly drunk.

Nearby words

  1. before you know it,
  2. beforehand,
  3. beforetime,
  4. befoul,
  5. befriend,
  6. beg,
  7. beg off,
  8. beg the question,
  9. beg to differ,
  10. beg, borrow, or steal

Origin of befuddle

First recorded in 1885–90; be- + fuddle

Related formsbe·fud·dler, nounbe·fud·dle·ment, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for befuddle

British Dictionary definitions for befuddle


verb (tr)

to confuse, muddle, or perplex
to make stupid with drink
Derived Formsbefuddlement, noun

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

Word Origin and History for befuddle



"confuse," 1873, from be- + fuddle; originally "to confuse with strong drink or opium" (by 1832). An earlier word in the same sense was begunk (1725). Related: Befuddled; befuddling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper