[kon-foun-did, kuh n-]


bewildered; confused; perplexed.
damned (used euphemistically): That is a confounded lie.

Origin of confounded

Middle English word dating back to 1325–75; see origin at confound, -ed2
Related formscon·found·ed·ly, adverbcon·found·ed·ness, nounun·con·found·ed·ly, adverb


[kon-found, kuhn-; for 6 usually kon-found]

verb (used with object)

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.
  1. to defeat or overthrow.
  2. to bring to ruin or naught.
Obsolete. to spend uselessly; waste.

Origin of confound

1250–1300; Middle English conf(o)unden < Anglo-French confoundre < Latin confundere to mix, equivalent to con- con- + fundere to pour
Related formscon·found·a·ble, adjectivecon·found·er, nouncon·found·ing·ly, adverbin·ter·con·found, verb (used with object)pre·con·found, verb (used with object)un·con·found, verb (used with object)un·con·found·ing, adjectiveun·con·found·ing·ly, adverb

Synonyms for confound Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for confounded

Contemporary Examples of confounded

Historical Examples of confounded

  • All the courtiers were amazed and confounded, and Sir Oliver the most of all.

    Biographical Stories

    Nathaniel Hawthorne

  • Mr Vladimir walked on, and the “confounded policeman” fell into step at his elbow.

    The Secret Agent

    Joseph Conrad

  • But, half-way in, he stopped, confounded by an unforeseen difficulty.

    The Black Bag

    Louis Joseph Vance

  • If it weren't for the confounded notion she's taken up against me, I'd like to know her.

  • It all comes of that confounded habit of mine of wanting to be in love.

British Dictionary definitions for confounded



bewildered; confused
(prenominal) informal execrable; damned
Derived Formsconfoundedly, adverbconfoundedness, noun


verb (tr)

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
Derived Formsconfoundable, adjectiveconfounder, noun

Word Origin for confound

C13: from Old French confondre, from Latin confundere to mingle, pour together, from fundere to pour
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

Word Origin and History for confounded

as an intensive execration, "odious, detestable, damned," 1650s, from past participle of confound, in its older English sense of "overthrow utterly."



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.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper