adjective, glum·mer, glum·mest.

sullenly or silently gloomy; dejected.

Origin of glum

1425–75; late Middle English; variant of gloom
Related formsglum·ly, adverbglum·ness, noun

Synonyms for glum

moody, sulky; despondent, melancholy. Glum, morose, sullen, dour, surly all are adjectives describing a gloomy, unsociable attitude. Glum describes a depressed, spiritless condition or manner, usually temporary rather than habitual: a glum shrug of the shoulders; a glum, hopeless look in his eye. Morose, which adds to glum a sense of bitterness, implies a habitual and pervasive gloominess: a sour, morose manner; morose withdrawal from human contact. Sullen usually implies reluctance or refusal to speak accompanied by glowering looks expressing anger or a sense of injury: a sullen manner, silence, look. Dour refers to a stern and forbidding aspect, stony and unresponsive: dour rejection of friendly overtures. Surly implies gruffness of speech and manner, usually accompanied by an air of injury and ill temper: a surly reply. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for glumly

glumly, sadly, sorrowfully, despondently, forlornly, gloomily

Examples from the Web for glumly

Contemporary Examples of glumly

Historical Examples of glumly

  • Thorvald shook his head, scanning the rock face before them glumly.

    Storm Over Warlock

    Andre Norton

  • John raised the diminutive perch into the air and regarded it glumly.

    A Son of the City

    Herman Gastrell Seely

  • Kutuzov, his hands still pressed on the seat, glanced at him glumly.

    War and Peace

    Leo Tolstoy

  • He was convinced that the entire ticket-buying cue was glumly resenting him.

    Free Air

    Sinclair Lewis

  • "Guess I'll quirl me a brownie and git into the feathers," glumly.

    The Dude Wrangler

    Caroline Lockhart

British Dictionary definitions for glumly


adjective glummer or glummest

silent or sullen, as from gloom
Derived Formsglumly, adverbglumness, noun

Word Origin for glum

C16: variant of gloom
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 glumly



1540s, "sullen, frowning," from Middle English gloumen (v.) "become dark" (c.1300), later gloumben "look gloomy or sullen" (late 14c.); see gloom. Related: Glumly; glumness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper