Origin of bounce

1175–1225; Middle English buncin, bounsen, variant of bunkin, apparently cognate with Dutch bonken to thump, belabor, bonzen to knock, bump
Related formsbounce·a·ble, adjectivebounce·a·bly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for bounce around


/ (baʊns) /



Word Origin for bounce

C13: probably of imitative origin; compare Low German bunsen to beat, Dutch bonken to thump
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

Idioms and Phrases with bounce around (1 of 2)

bounce around


Move around from one person or place to another. For example, The staff spent the morning bouncing around ideas to improve sales, or She had been bouncing around from one job to another. This term alludes to a ball bouncing among players. [Colloquial; mid-1900s]


Treat roughly or unfairly, as in Quit bouncing me around; I won't stand for it. This usage is based on a somewhat earlier meaning of bounce, “to beat up” or “coerce.” ] Slang; c. 1970]

Idioms and Phrases with bounce around (2 of 2)


In addition to the idioms beginning with bounce

  • bounce around
  • bounce back

also see:

  • get the ax (bounce)
  • more bounce for the ounce
  • that's how the ball bounces
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.