Dictionary.com

mess-up

[ mes-uhp ]
/ ˈmɛsˌʌp /
Save This Word!

noun

a blunder; state of confusion; mix-up.

QUIZZES

THINK YOU’VE GOT A HANDLE ON THIS US STATE NICKNAME QUIZ?

Did you ever collect all those state quarters? Put them to good use on this quiz about curious state monikers and the facts around them.
Question 1 of 8
Mississippi’s nickname comes from the magnificent trees that grow there. What is it?

Origin of mess-up

First recorded in 1900–05; noun use of verb phrase mess up
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for mess-up

Idioms and Phrases with mess-up

mess up

1

Create disorder in; muddle or ruin. For example, On rainy days the children really mess up the house, or He had a way of messing up his own business. [c. 1900]

2

Make a mistake, especially from nervousness or confusion, as in He messed up and took the wrong dossier to the meeting, or Jill swore she would never mess up again. [Colloquial; early 1900s]

3

Beat up, manhandle, as in Joe got messed up in a barroom brawl. [Slang; early 1900s]

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
Book Your Online Tutor Now