mum

1
[ muhm ]
/ mʌm /

adjective

silent; not saying a word: to keep mum.

interjection

say nothing! be silent!

Nearby words

  1. multiwall,
  2. multiwindow,
  3. multnomah falls,
  4. multum in parvo,
  5. multure,
  6. mum's the word,
  7. mum-and-dad investor,
  8. mumbai,
  9. mumble,
  10. mumblety-peg

Idioms

    mum's the word, do not reveal what you know (about something); keep silent: Mum's the word, or the surprise party won't be a surprise.

Origin of mum

1
1350–1400; Middle English momme; imitative

mum

2

or mumm

[ muhm ]
/ mʌm /

verb (used without object), mummed, mum·ming.

to say “mum”; call for silence.
to act as a mummer.

Origin of mum

2
1350–1400; Middle English mommen, v. use of mum1; compare Middle Dutch mommen to act the mummer's part

mum

3
[ muhm ]
/ mʌm /

noun

Origin of mum

3
shortened form

mum

4
[ muhm ]
/ mʌm /

noun Chiefly British.

Origin of mum

4
1815–25; nursery word; see mom

mum

5
[ muhm ]
/ mʌm /

noun

a strong beer or ale, first made in Brunswick, Germany.

Origin of mum

5
First recorded in 1630–40, mum is from the German word Mumme, said to have been named after the brewer who made it

mum

6
[ muhm ]
/ mʌm /

noun Chiefly British.

Origin of mum

6
variant of ma'am

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for mum


British Dictionary definitions for mum

mum

1
/ (mʌm) /

noun

mainly British an informal word for mother 1

Word Origin for mum

C19: a child's word

adjective

keeping information to oneself; silent

noun

mum's the word silence or secrecy is to be observed

Word Origin for mum

C14: suggestive of closed lips

verb mums, mumming or mummed

(intr) to act in a mummer's play

Word Origin for mum

C16: verbal use of mum ²

noun

British obsolete a type of beer made from cereals, beans, etc

Word Origin for mum

C17: from German Mumme, perhaps from the name of its original brewer

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

Word Origin and History for mum
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper