[ kuhm-ber ]
/ ˈkʌm bər /

verb (used with object)

to hinder; hamper.
to overload; burden.
to inconvenience; trouble.


a hindrance.
something that cumbers.
Archaic. embarrassment; trouble.

Origin of cumber

1250–1300; Middle English cumbre (noun), cumbren (v.), aphetic variant of acumbren to harass, defeat; see encumber

Related forms

cum·ber·er, nouncum·ber·ment, nouno·ver·cum·ber, verb (used with object)un·cum·bered, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for cumber

British Dictionary definitions for cumber


/ (ˈkʌmbə) /

verb (tr)

to obstruct or hinder
obsolete to inconvenience


a hindrance or burden

Derived Forms

cumberer, noun

Word Origin for cumber

C13: probably from Old French combrer to impede, prevent, from combre barrier; see encumber
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