verb (used with object), bum·fuz·zled, bum·fuz·zling. Chiefly South Midland and Southern U.S.
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Words nearby bumfuzzle
What does bumfuzzle mean?
To bumfuzzle is to confuse or fluster.
Bumfuzzle is most often used in the dialect of the Southern United States. It is colloquial, meaning it is typically used in informal conversation. It is very similar to bamboozle, and may be derived from it.
Example: I was totally bumfuzzled by the physics homework last night—I didn’t understand any of it!
Where does bumfuzzle come from?
Bumfuzzle has been used since at least the late 1800s. Fittingly, its origin isn’t certain. Its first part, bum, is perhaps a variation of the first part of bamboozle, which has been used since the 1700s. The second part, fuzzle, maybe be an alteration of fuddle, which also means “to confuse.”
In 1999, President Bill Clinton (who was born in the Southern state of Arkansas) used bumfuzzled in a speech. Due to how obscure it is, some people thought that Clinton had coined it himself. (Interestingly, in the White House transcript of the event, it was spelled bum-fusseled.)
Bumfuzzle is mainly used by Southern speakers in informal conversation, but it is not limited to that region. Let’s be honest, when you hear a word like bumfuzzle, you add it to your vocabulary no matter where you live. So the next time you’re confused, bamboozled, perplexed, bewildered, puzzled, or befuddled, you can say that something is bumfuzzling you.
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How is bumfuzzle used in real life?
Bumfuzzle sounds silly, so it’s usually used to be funny, especially when describing a humorously confusing situation.
It bumfuzzles me that people still have the site that publicly tweets on their account how many people unfollowed / followed them….can someone explain this phenomenon to me
— Sarah Jenne (@sarah_jenne_) January 10, 2019
MineCraft bumfuzzles me 😐 Why do the wolves look like dogs and the mushroom blocks look like dice?!
— Cherbear (@iKaggyChan) September 6, 2014
I’m trying to learn a new word every day but the hard part is fitting it in a sentence naturally so usually I end up just starting a conversation with “hey so do you know what bumfuzzle means? It’s crazy” and that’s how I forget new words every day:)
— Shannon Dowling (@shannondowling_) February 7, 2020
Try using bumfuzzle!
Which of the following words is NOT a synonym for bumfuzzle?