[ roo-mer ]
/ ˈru mər /
Save This Word!
See synonyms for: rumor / rumored / rumors on Thesaurus.com

a story or statement in general circulation without confirmation or certainty as to facts: a rumor of war.
gossip; hearsay: Don't listen to rumor.
Archaic. a continuous, confused noise; clamor; din.
verb (used with object)
to circulate, report, or assert by a rumor: It is rumored that the king is dead.
We could talk until we're blue in the face about this quiz on words for the color "blue," but we think you should take the quiz and find out if you're a whiz at these colorful terms.
Question 1 of 8
Which of the following words describes “sky blue”?
Meet Grammar CoachWrite or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar helpImprove Your Writing
Meet Grammar CoachImprove Your Writing
Write or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar help
Also especially British, ru·mour .

Origin of rumor

1325–75; Middle English rumour<Middle French <Latin rūmor; akin to Sanskrit rāuti, rāvati (he) cries


un·ru·mored, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021


What does rumor mean?

A rumor is a story or statement that is being passed around without confirmation that the information is true, as in I heard a rumor about a new superhero movie.

Rumor can also mean general hearsay, as in You shouldn’t put much faith in rumor and speculation. 

As a verb, rumor means to spread or report rumors. When used this way, it is usually accompanied by the thing that is a rumor, as in It has been rumored that Disney is building a new amusement park outside the city. 

While rumor does mean the information hasn’t been checked, it is still possible for it to be true. For this reason, rumor may not always be able to be used as a synonym for words like lie, falsehood, nonsense, or fiction.

In British English, rumor is often spelled as rumour.

A person who loves spreading rumors is called a rumormonger.

Example: My gossipy neighbor loves spreading ridiculous rumors all over town.

Where does rumor come from?

The first records of rumor come from around 1325. It ultimately comes from the Latin rūmor. Even in ancient Rome, people couldn’t help themselves from spreading rumors.

People are fascinated by rumors. Magazines and celebrity gossip publications often dedicate entire issues to spreading rumors about famous people. Rumors allow our imagination to run wild, which is probably why we enjoy hearing them.

Professional journalists are not supposed to report rumors as facts and will typically alert readers that the information is unconfirmed to avoid being sued for slander or libel.

Did you know … ?

What are some other forms related to rumor?

  • rumour (alternative spelling)
  • unrumored (adjective)

What are some synonyms for rumor?

What are some words that share a root or word element with rumor?

What are some words that often get used in discussing rumor?

How is rumor used in real life?

People love to spread rumors. A word of advice: It is a good idea to check for the truth if a rumor sounds ridiculous or untrue.

Try using rumor!

Which of the following is NOT a synonym of rumor?

A. gossip
B. truth
C. hearsay
D. tale

How to use rumor in a sentence