[ an inarticulate expression resembling a snort; spelling pronunciation huhmf ]

  1. (used to indicate disbelief, contempt, etc.)

verb (used with or without object)
  1. to utter by or as if by expressing “humph.”

Origin of humph

First recorded in 1675–85
  • Also umph [uhm, uhmf; spelling pronunciation uhmf] /əm, əmf; spelling pronunciation ʌmf/ .

Words Nearby humph Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use humph in a sentence

  • "humph," grunted Grace, unsympathetically, as she prepared to climb into her berth again.

  • "humph, please change the names to Sam and Grace and you'll hit it closer," answered Tom, his face growing red.

    The Rover Boys on the Farm | Arthur M. Winfield (AKA Edward Stratemeyer)
  • If she ain't twice as smart as the run of young ones 'round here then—humph!

    Cy Whittaker's Place | Joseph C. Lincoln
  • humph, said Sikes, as if he thought the interest lay rather more on the Jews side than on his.

    Oliver Twist, Vol. I (of 3) | Charles Dickens
  • humph, he thought, if youd just heard what I have, a whole lot of you would be getting the doctor to fix you up seasick remedies.

British Dictionary definitions for humph


/ (spelling pron hʌmf) /

  1. an exclamation of annoyance, dissatisfaction, scepticism, 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