[ kruhm-puhl ]
See synonyms for: crumplecrumpledcrumples on

verb (used with object),crum·pled, crum·pling.
  1. to press or crush into irregular folds or into a compact mass; bend out of shape; rumple; wrinkle.

  2. to cause to collapse or give way suddenly: That right hook to the midsection crumpled him.

verb (used without object),crum·pled, crum·pling.
  1. to contract into wrinkles; shrink; shrivel.

  2. to give way suddenly; collapse: The bridge crumpled under the weight of the heavy trucks.

  1. an irregular fold or wrinkle produced by crumpling.

Origin of crumple

1400–50; late Middle English; variant of crimple

Other words from crumple

  • crumply, adjective
  • un·crum·pling, adjective

Words Nearby crumple Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use crumple in a sentence

  • The life went out of her like the flame from a dying candle, and she seemed to shrink and crumple and to sway upon her feet.

    "Persons Unknown" | Virginia Tracy
  • They can't endure it; so much goodness breaks down their wing arches, and the glorious ones crumple together like tissue-paper.

  • She will wear a lovely dress she calls a tea-gown, all soft and lacey, and she doesn't mind how much I crumple it.

  • Then he seemed to crumple up entirely, and, falling forward, rolled with a loud splash into the river.

    The Hero of Panama | F. S. Brereton

British Dictionary definitions for crumple


/ (ˈkrʌmpəl) /

  1. (when intr, often foll by up) to collapse or cause to collapse: his courage crumpled

  2. (when tr, often foll by up) to crush or cause to be crushed so as to form wrinkles or creases

  1. (intr) to shrink; shrivel

  1. a loose crease or wrinkle

Origin of crumple

C16: from obsolete crump to bend; related to Old High German krimpfan to wrinkle, Old Norse kreppa to contract

Derived forms of crumple

  • crumply, adjective

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