- to perplex or amaze, especially by a sudden disturbance or surprise; bewilder; confuse: The complicated directions confounded him.
- to throw into confusion or disorder: The revolution confounded the people.
- to throw into increased confusion or disorder.
- to treat or regard erroneously as identical; mix or associate by mistake: truth confounded with error.
- to mingle so that the elements cannot be distinguished or separated.
- to damn (used in mild imprecations): Confound it!
- to contradict or refute: to confound their arguments.
- to put to shame; abash.
- to defeat or overthrow.
- to bring to ruin or naught.
- Obsolete. to spend uselessly; waste.
Origin of confound
SynonymsSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Related Wordsmystify, perplex, bewilder, discombobulate, rattle, puzzle, astound, baffle, amaze, startle, faze, astonish, embarrass, surprise, dumbfound, discomfit, discountenance, blend, nonplus, pose
Examples from the Web for confound
The increase in recognition of autism spectrum disorders in Western countries continues to confound and confuse.No, Stem Cells Don't Cause Autism
September 11, 2014
Yet, as a whole, the events that transpired between 1900 and 2000 B.C.E. still manage to confound the contemporary imagination.History Broke Us: One Jewish Family’s 20th Century
November 29, 2013
He may be an exception, but his example proves that grace can confound the expectations and machinations of curial politics.The Catholic Church Is Insular and Intolerant
March 8, 2013
To complicate and confound matters further, North Korea has done more than simply throw grenades.Leslie H. Gelb: North Korea, U.S. Headed to Brink of War, Unnoticed
Leslie H. Gelb
April 1, 2012
To confound the problem, there has not been a UN human rights monitor in Iran since 2002.Iran's Execution Binge
Omid Memarian, Roja Heydarpour
February 5, 2011
But no—confound it—there was some one coming down the avenue!The Tenant of Wildfell Hall
Besides, confound it, Tom, you could be useful to me in a hundred ways.'
Confound her, it was like her pale face to be wandering up and down the house!
It is not essential formally and absolutely to confound will with desire.Initiation into Philosophy
Why should I look him up, confound him—he hadn't bothered his head about me.The Harbor
- to astound or perplex; bewilder
- to mix up; confuse
- to treat mistakenly as similar to or identical with (one or more other things)
- (kɒnˈfaʊnd) to curse or damn (usually as an expletive in the phrase confound it!)
- to contradict or refute (an argument, etc)
- to rout or defeat (an enemy)
- obsolete to waste
Word Origin and History for confound
c.1300, "make uneasy, abash," from Anglo-French confoundre, Old French confondre (12c.) "crush, ruin, disgrace, throw into disorder," from Latin confundere "to confuse," literally "to pour together, mix, mingle," from com- "together" (see com-) + fundere "to pour" (see found (v.2)).
The figurative sense of "confuse, fail to distinguish, mix up" emerged in Latin, passed into French and thence into Middle English, where it is mostly found in Scripture; the sense of "destroy utterly" is recorded in English from c.1300. Meaning "perplex" is late 14c. The Latin past participle confusus, meanwhile, became confused (q.v.).