- causing or tending to cause confusion: a confusing attempt at explanation.
Origin of confusing
- to perplex or bewilder: The flood of questions confused me.
- to make unclear or indistinct: The rumors and angry charges tended to confuse the issue.
- to fail to distinguish between; associate by mistake; confound: to confuse dates; He always confuses the twins.
- to disconcert or abash: His candor confused her.
- to combine without order; jumble; disorder: Try not to confuse the papers on the desk.
- Archaic. to bring to ruin or naught.
Origin of confuse
SynonymsSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for confusing
The confusing thing, however, is Lopez has never been hotter.The Biggest Bombs of 2014: ‘Sex Tape,’ Mariah Carey’s Vocals, ‘How I Met Your Mother’ and More
December 19, 2014
That this kind of episode was The Newsroom finale was…confusing.'The Newsroom' Ended As It Began: Weird, Controversial, and Noble
December 15, 2014
We might as well begin with the most confusing and, frankly, suspect person in all of Serial.The Scoop on ‘Serial’: Making Sense of The Nisha Call, Asia's Letters, and Our Obsession
December 11, 2014
Taylor Swift: Aerobicized The 1980s were a confusing time for America.Jimmy Kimmel Pranks Kids (Again), Taylor Swift’s 1989 Aerobics, and More Viral Videos
The Daily Beast Video
November 9, 2014
On top of inciting violence that led to the death of a 16-year-old boy, it was confusing to residents.Meet the Liberian Girls Beating Ebola
October 29, 2014
Some sweet, confusing influence, he knew not what, passed into his blood.Beauty and The Beast, and Tales From Home
The reader should take note of this term and refrain from confusing it with the sails.Boys' Book of Model Boats
Raymond Francis Yates
She had often been on errands alone in the great city, where everything was so confusing.
The din is so confusing, and your aunt is quite right—one ought to make a list.Howards End
E. M. Forster
He may be described as confusing the attraction of gravitation with the attraction of cohesion.Timaeus
- causing bewilderment; difficult to follow; puzzling
- to bewilder; perplex
- to mix up (things, ideas, etc); jumble
- to make unclearhe confused his talk with irrelevant details
- to fail to recognize the difference between; mistake (one thing) for another
- to disconcert; embarrass
- to cause to become disorderedthe enemy ranks were confused by gas
Word Origin and History for confusing
1550s, in literal sense "mix or mingle things so as to render the elements indistinguishable;" attested from mid-18c. in active, figurative sense of "discomfit in mind or feeling;" not in general use until 19c., taking over senses formerly belonging to confound, dumbfound, flabbergast etc. The past participle confused (q.v.) is attested much earlier (serving as an alternative past tense to confound), and the verb here might be a back-formation from it. Related: Confusing.