• synonyms


[kruhm-puh l]
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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.
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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.
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  1. an irregular fold or wrinkle produced by crumpling.
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Origin of crumple

1400–50; late Middle English; variant of crimple
Related formscrum·ply, adjectiveun·crum·pling, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for crumples

Historical Examples

  • Crumples or no crumples, there was no denying that blue was a becoming colour.

    About Peggy Saville

    Mrs. G. de Horne Vaizey

  • Hubbard passes it to him, and he looks at it, crumples it in his hand, and grinds it under foot.


    Jack London

  • And he crumples up his little face like those things in gutta-percha.

    Jacqueline, Complete

    (Mme. Blanc) Th. Bentzon

  • I think you are right, Mr. Crumples, added the vice-principal.

  • Tootsie Wootsie is about to sign when Medicine Man crumples into heap.

British Dictionary definitions for crumples


  1. (when intr, often foll by up) to collapse or cause to collapsehis courage crumpled
  2. (when tr, often foll by up) to crush or cause to be crushed so as to form wrinkles or creases
  3. (intr) to shrink; shrivel
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  1. a loose crease or wrinkle
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Derived Formscrumply, adjective

Word Origin

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



c.1300, crumplen, frequentative of crumpen "to curl up" (from Old English crump "bent, crooked"). Related: Crumpled; crumpling.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper