[ bih-nuhm ]
See synonyms for: benumbbenumbed on

verb (used with object)
  1. to make numb; deprive of sensation: benumbed by cold.

  2. to render inactive; deaden or stupefy.

Origin of benumb

1350–1400; back formation from Middle English benomen, past participle of benimen to take away, Old English beniman; cognate with Dutch benemen,German benehmen,Gothic biniman.See be-, nimble, numb

Other words from benumb

  • be·numbed·ness [bih-nuhmd-nis, -nuhm-id-], /bɪˈnʌmd nɪs, -ˈnʌm ɪd-/, noun
  • be·numb·ing·ly, adverb
  • be·numb·ment, noun
  • un·be·numbed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use benumb in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for benumb


/ (bɪˈnʌm) /

  1. to make numb or powerless; deaden physical feeling in, as by cold

  2. (usually passive) to make inactive; stupefy (the mind, senses, will, etc)

Derived forms of benumb

  • benumbingly, adverb

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