Humpty Dumpty

[huhmp-tee duhmp-tee]
noun
  1. an egg-shaped character in a Mother Goose nursery rhyme that fell off a wall and could not be put together again.
  2. (sometimes lowercase) something that has been damaged severely and usually irreparably.

Origin of Humpty Dumpty

rhyming compound based on humpty; see hump, -ed3, -y2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for humpty dumpty

humpty dumpty

noun mainly British
  1. a short fat person
  2. a person or thing that once overthrown or broken cannot be restored or mended

Word Origin for humpty dumpty

C18: after the nursery rhyme Humpty Dumpty
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

humpty dumpty in Culture

“Humpty Dumpty”

A nursery rhyme:

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall;
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king's horses and all the king's men
Couldn't put Humpty together again.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.