be·​fud·​dle | \ bi-ˈfə-dᵊl How to pronounce befuddle (audio) , bē-\
befuddled; befuddling; befuddles

Definition of befuddle

transitive verb

1 : to muddle or stupefy with or as if with drink befuddled with drink all the time.— Ellen Glasgow
2 : confuse, perplex a problem that still befuddles the experts

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Other Words from befuddle

befuddlement \ bi-​ˈfə-​dᵊl-​mənt How to pronounce befuddlement (audio) , bē-​ \ noun

Examples of befuddle in a Sentence

most of the applicants were befuddled by the wording of one of the questions on the driving test

Recent Examples on the Web

The poor soul saw three pitches and appeared to be completely befuddled by all of them, the bat never once leaving his shoulder. Bill Plaschke,, "This Clayton Kershaw should be good enough for Dodgers," 29 June 2018 Instead of sending spammers to voice mail, RoboKiller’s Answer Bots can use prerecorded messages to frustrate and befuddle them. Sara Clemence, WSJ, "4 Smartphone Apps That Aggressively Block Spam Calls," 5 July 2018 That's why the former University of Cincinnati chemistry/toxicology professor remains befuddled by what happened to him in Washington last year. James Pilcher,, "A University of Cincinnati professor wanted to work for Trump's EPA. He ended up demonized - and jobless," 25 Jan. 2018 Detroit tallied just three hits all game and was befuddled by A’s starter Chris Bassitt and Oakland’s bullpen. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Tigers befuddled by Oakland Athletics 3-0 in 8th straight loss," 27 June 2018 Sometimes, when replays have not been shown on stadium scoreboards, fans have been befuddled as to what’s unfolding in front of them. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, "The World Cup Has Adopted Instant Replay. On Further Review, That’s a Bad Idea," 14 June 2018 Ancient Egyptians added a symbol for zero to numerical charts around the 18th century B.C., but the concept befuddled the ancient Greeks, and Roman numerals famously lacked a symbol for zero until much later. Jay Bennett, Popular Mechanics, "Buzzy for Nothing: Bees Understand What Zero Is," 7 June 2018 Baseball money lines, especially, befuddled a few of the patrons. Ed Barkowitz,, "You bettor believe it: Delaware is open for sports betting," 5 June 2018 So if you are ever befuddled by any of this, just look for a trail of control. Susan Crawford, WIRED, "The Comcast-Disney Battle Isn't Just Business—It's a Grand Human Drama," 7 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'befuddle.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of befuddle

1801, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for befuddle

be- + fuddle

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Time Traveler for befuddle

The first known use of befuddle was in 1801

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More Definitions for befuddle


be·​fud·​dle | \ bi-ˈfə-dᵊl How to pronounce befuddle (audio) \
befuddled; befuddling

Kids Definition of befuddle

: confuse sense 1 Your explanation befuddled me.

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More from Merriam-Webster on befuddle

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for befuddle

Spanish Central: Translation of befuddle

Nglish: Translation of befuddle for Spanish Speakers

Comments on befuddle

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something valued as if it were money

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