[ muhm-er ]
/ ˈmʌm ər /


a person who wears a mask or fantastic costume while merrymaking or taking part in a pantomime, especially at Christmas and other festive seasons.
an actor, especially a pantomimist.

Nearby words

  1. mumchance,
  2. mumetal,
  3. mumford,
  4. mumford, lewis,
  5. mumm,
  6. mummerset,
  7. mummery,
  8. mummichog,
  9. mummification,
  10. mummify

Origin of mummer

First recorded in 1400–50, mummer is from the late Middle English word mommer. See mum2, -er1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for mummer

British Dictionary definitions for mummer


/ (ˈmʌmə) /


one of a group of masked performers in folk play or mime
a mime artist
jocular, or derogatory an actor

Word Origin for mummer

C15: from Old French momeur, from momer to mime; related to momon mask

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 mummer



"one who performs in a mumming, actor in a dumb show," early 15c., probably a fusion of Middle French momeur "mummer" (from Old French momer "mask oneself," from momon "mask") and Middle English mommen "to mutter, be silent," related to mum (interjection).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper