- lacking intelligence or good judgment; stupid; dull-witted.
- lacking the power of speech (offensive when applied to humans): a dumb animal.
- temporarily unable to speak: dumb with astonishment.
- refraining from any or much speech; silent.
- made, done, etc., without speech.
- lacking some usual property, characteristic, etc.
- performed in pantomime; mimed.
- Computers. pertaining to the inability to do processing locally: A dumb terminal can input, output, and display data, but cannot process it.Compare intelligent(def 4).
- (of a barge) without means of propulsion.
- (of any craft) without means of propulsion, steering, or signaling.
- dumb down, Informal. to make or become less intellectual, simpler, or less sophisticated: to dumb down a textbook; American movies have dumbed down.
Origin of dumb
Examples from the Web for dumber
When you see those people on Fox “News,” change the channel because they are making you dumber.Would You Risk Your Life to Vote? It Looks Like 7 Million Afghans Did.
April 7, 2014
I think he can do it, especially with the unwitting help of the Republicans, who get dumber every week.How Obama Can Become Our Era’s Reagan
January 21, 2013
A dumber move, on the Warhol front, came when one of his intense car-crash paintings went for “only” $8 million.Christie’s Touts $412 Million Art Auction but Art Was Not the Winner
November 15, 2012
In this scene from Dumb & Dumber, Lloyd tricks Harry by adding laxatives to his tea to sabotage a date.April Fool’s! Hollywood’s Biggest Pranks
April 1, 2012
In fact, Beck told viewers in a spirited refrain, “You couldn't get dumber than me.”Glenn Beck’s Most Outrageous Moments
The Daily Beast Video
June 30, 2011
"She's a lively one if she is a dumber," said Freckles approvingly.Flamsted quarries
Mary E. Waller
No, oh, no; for then she would be deafer and dumber and blinder than she was before.Following the Equator, Complete
Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)
Th' funny part o' it is, th' dumber they air th' more they chatter.Bring Me His Ears
Clarence E. Mulford
Dumber's face expressed such amazement and consternation that John nearly laughed in spite of himself.
Only in moments of intense excitement did Dumber misplace or leave out the aspirate.
- lacking the power to speak, either because of defects in the vocal organs or because of hereditary deafness
- lacking the power of human speechdumb animals
- temporarily lacking or bereft of the power to speakstruck dumb
- refraining from speech; uncommunicative
- producing no sound; silenta dumb piano
- made, done, or performed without speech
- slow to understand; dim-witted
- foolish; stupidSee also dumb down
- (of a projectile or bomb) not guided to its target
Word Origin and History for dumber
Old English dumb "silent, unable to speak," from PIE *dheubh- "confusion, stupefaction, dizziness," from root *dheu- (1) "dust, mist, vapor, smoke," and related notions of "defective perception or wits."
The Old English, Old Saxon (dumb), Gothic (dumbs), and Old Norse (dumbr) forms of the word meant only "mute, speechless;" in Old High German (thumb) it meant both this and "stupid," and in Modern German this latter became the only sense. Meaning "foolish, ignorant" was occasionally in Middle English, but modern use (1823) comes from influence of German dumm. Related: dumber; dumbest.
Applied to silent contrivances, hence dumbwaiter. As a verb, in late Old English, "to become mute;" c.1600, "to make mute." To dumb (something) down is from 1933.