- in disorderly, headlong haste; in a recklessly hurried manner.
- in a confused or jumbled mass, crowd, manner, etc.: The crowd rushed pell-mell into the store when the doors opened.
- indiscriminate; disorderly; confused: a pell-mell dash after someone.
- overhasty or precipitate; rash: pell-mell spending.
- a confused or jumbled mass, crowd, etc.
- disorderly, headlong haste.
Origin of pell-mell
Related Wordschaotic, confused, disorganized, haphazard, muddled, hastily, headlong, helter-skelter, impetuously, indiscreetly, posthaste, rashly, recklessly, heedlessly, incontinently, anarchy, chaos, clutter, confusion, disarray
Examples from the Web for pell-mell
For now, the momentum does appear to be firmly behind the rebel forces in the east and their pell-mell dash through the desert.Libya's Rebels Advance on Gaddafi's Hometown
March 5, 2011
This was promptly followed by a pell-mell dash for the open.The Law-Breakers
Thus the facts reach us pell-mell, without distinction of nature.Introduction to the Study of History
Charles V. Langlois
On board went the Rough Riders pell-mell, and not a minute too soon.American Boy's Life of Theodore Roosevelt
Pell-mell down the stairs rushed the youths, one after another.Dave Porter in the Gold Fields
The condemned were loaded into them pell-mell, with hands tied.The Gods are Athirst
- in a confused headlong rushthe hounds ran pell-mell into the yard
- in a disorderly mannerthe things were piled pell-mell in the room
- disordered; tumultuousa pell-mell rush for the exit
- disorder; confusion
Word Origin and History for pell-mell
"confusedly," 1570s, from Middle French pêle-mêle, from Old French pesle mesle (12c.), apparently a jingling rhyme on the second element, which is from the stem of the verb mesler "to mix, mingle" (see meddle). Phonetic French form pelly melly is attested in English from mid-15c.
In a confused, disorderly manner: “After the assembly, the students ran pell-mell from the auditorium.”