[ mis-han-dl ]
/ mɪsˈhæn dl /

verb (used with object), mis·han·dled, mis·han·dling.

to handle badly; maltreat: to mishandle a dog.
to manage badly: to mishandle an estate.
to lose or misplace: to mishandle baggage.

Origin of mishandle

First recorded in 1490–1500; mis-1 + handle
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for mishandle

  • That misstep turned the narrative into how Romney would handle (or mishandle) a crisis, rather than keeping the focus on Obama.

  • I hope they'll be all right careful of them pianos and not mishandle them so they'll get out of tune.

    Bucky O'Connor|William MacLeod Raine
  • A man hasn't many privileges in this country, but he might at least be allowed to mishandle his own rifle.

    Life's Handicap|Rudyard Kipling

British Dictionary definitions for mishandle

/ (ˌmɪsˈhændəl) /


(tr) to handle or treat badly or inefficiently
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