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Idioms for bum

    bum (someone) out, Slang. to disappoint, upset, or annoy: It really bummed me out that she could have helped and didn't.
    on the bum, Informal.
    1. living or traveling as or in a manner suggesting that of a hobo or tramp.
    2. in a state of disrepair or disorder: The oven is on the bum again.

Origin of bum

1860–65, Americanism; perhaps shortening of or back formation from bummer1; adj. senses of unclear relation to sense “loafer” and perhaps of distinct orig.

Definition for bum (2 of 3)

[ buhm ]
/ bʌm /

noun Chiefly British Slang.

the buttocks; rump.

Origin of bum

1350–1400; Middle English bom; of uncertain origin

Definition for bum (3 of 3)

[ buhm ]
/ bʌm /

noun Military Slang.

a reproduction of a document made with copying equipment.
a bag into which classified waste is put in preparation for destruction.

Origin of bum

perhaps as shortening of bumf or bumfodder; def. 2 presumably as shortening of bum bag
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for bum

British Dictionary definitions for bum (1 of 2)

/ (bʌm) /


British slang the buttocks or anus

Word Origin for bum

C14: of uncertain origin

British Dictionary definitions for bum (2 of 2)

/ (bʌm) informal /


verb bums, bumming or bummed


(prenominal) of poor quality; useless
wrong or inappropriatea bum note

Word Origin for bum

C19: probably shortened from earlier bummer a loafer, probably from German bummeln to loaf
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 bum


The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.