View synonyms for hump


[ huhmp ]


  1. a rounded protuberance, especially a fleshy protuberance on the back, as that due to abnormal curvature of the spine in humans, or that normally present in certain animals, as the camel or bison.
  2. Physical Geography.
    1. a low, rounded rise of ground; hummock.
    2. a mountain or mountain range.
  3. Railroads. (in a switchyard) a raised area down which cars pushed to its crest roll by gravity and momentum for automatic sorting through a series of preset switches.
  4. Slang: Vulgar.
    1. an act or instance of sexual intercourse.
    2. a partner in sexual intercourse.
  5. the hump,
    1. British Slang. a fit of depression or bad humor:

      to get the hump.

    2. (initial capital letter) (in World War II) the Himalayas.

verb (used with object)

  1. to raise (the back) in a hump; hunch:

    The cat humped its back.

  2. Railroads. to sort (cars) by means of a hump.
  3. Informal. to exert (oneself ) in a great effort.
  4. Slang: Vulgar. to have sexual intercourse with.
  5. Slang.
    1. to place or bear on the back or shoulder.
    2. to carry or haul.
    3. to load or unload; lift.

verb (used without object)

  1. to rise in a hump.
  2. Informal. to exert oneself; hustle or hurry.
  3. Slang: Vulgar. to engage in sexual intercourse.


/ hʌmp /


  1. a rounded protuberance or projection, as of earth, sand, etc
  2. pathol a rounded deformity of the back in persons with kyphosis, consisting of a convex spinal curvature
  3. a rounded protuberance on the back of a camel or related animal
  4. the hump informal.
    a fit of depression or sulking (esp in the phrase it gives me the hump )
  5. over the hump
    past the largest or most difficult portion of work, time, etc
“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


  1. to form or become a hump; hunch; arch
  2. slang.
    tr to carry or heave
  3. slang.
    to have sexual intercourse with (someone)
  4. hump one's swag informal.
    (of a tramp) to carry one's belongings from place to place on one's back
“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
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Derived Forms

  • ˈhumpˌlike, adjective
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Other Words From

  • humper noun
  • humpless adjective
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Word History and Origins

Origin of hump1

First recorded in 1700–10; probably abstracted from humpbacked; akin to Frisian hompe “lump, chunk,” Dutch homp “lump, chunk,” Middle Low German hump “bump,” Norwegian dialect hupp, hump “flank (of an animal),” or Low German humpel, hümpel “height, knob, hump (of a camel)”
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Word History and Origins

Origin of hump1

C18: probably from earlier humpbacked
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Idioms and Phrases

  1. over the hump, past the most difficult, time-consuming, or dangerous part or period:

    The doctor says she's over the hump now and should improve steadily.

More idioms and phrases containing hump

see over the hump .
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Example Sentences

The problem is getting over the disgust hump, because people don’t realize they’ll cease to be disgusted once they get used to something.

They were about how animals got their famous features, like the camel’s hump and the leopard’s spots.

The vehicles will have longer wheelbases with shorter overhangs, which means the steering wheel and pedals can come forward, and there’s no hump down the center of the cabin to accommodate the drivetrain.

If Democrats can get lower-propensity voters in the Rio Grande Valley and the big metro areas to turn out, I’m convinced we’d get over the hump.

It’s no longer Wednesday, but you should still check out our OZY hump day playlist.

From Ozy

Diplomatic dispatches at the time, written by men who had no reason to lie to their own rulers, reported no hump or withered arm.

Also 2004: John Kerry kept it close but never got over the hump.

Despite 20 years of cycling between expectation and disappointment, I hump along with that aim in mind.

In the former Bill Hurt longed to hump you and in the latter a large dog did just that in your role as an animal trainer.

Of course, not even a new Contract With America may be enough to help Republicans over the hump in 2010.

She wore an old poke bonnet and carried a crooked stick, and there seemed to be a hump upon her back.

The hump-backed little figure with poke-bonnet and cane was chased out upon the broken landing.

The cloak and the hump under it were likewise torn off and went sailing away on the current.

Now, said the hump-backed man, who had watched him keenly, what do you mean by coming into my house in this violent way?

Hump, stay and take this wolfeOut of my brest, that thou hast lodgd there, orFor euer lose mee.


Definitions and idiom definitions from Unabridged, based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

Idioms from The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.