encumber


en·cum·ber

verb \in-ˈkəm-bər\

: to make (someone or something) hold or carry something heavy

: to cause problems or difficulties for (someone or something)

en·cum·bereden·cum·ber·ing\-b(ə-)riŋ\

Full Definition of ENCUMBER

transitive verb
1
:  weigh down, burden <tourists encumbered by heavy luggage>
2
:  to impede or hamper the function or activity of :  hinder <negotiations encumbered by a lack of trust>
3
:  to burden with a legal claim (as a mortgage) <encumber an estate>

Examples of ENCUMBER

  1. These rules will only encumber the people we're trying to help.
  2. Lack of funding has encumbered the project.

Origin of ENCUMBER

Middle English encombren, from Anglo-French encumbrer, from en- + Middle French combre dam, weir
First Known Use: 14th century

Browse

Next Word in the Dictionary: encumberingly
Previous Word in the Dictionary: enculturation
All Words Near: encumber

Seen & Heard

What made you want to look up encumber? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Get Our Free Apps
Voice Search, Favorites,
Word of the Day, and More
Join Us on FB & Twitter
Get the Word of the Day and More