\ ˈbləj How to pronounce bludge (audio) \
bludged; bludging

Definition of bludge

intransitive verb

1 chiefly Australia and New Zealand : to avoid work or responsibility
2 chiefly Australia and New Zealand : sponge sense 2

transitive verb

chiefly Australia and New Zealand : sponge sense 3

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Other Words from bludge

bludger noun, chiefly Australia and New Zealand

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Though they can be annoying, people who bludge - bludgers - are relatively harmless. On the other hand, a bully armed with a bludgeon - a bludgeoner - can cause serious harm. In the 19th century, bludgeoner was shortened to bludger and used as a slang word for "pimp." That bludger was certainly a kind of bully, one apparently willing to wield a bludgeon now and then to insure his livelihood. In the early 20th century, bludge became the verb for what a bludger does. By then, a somewhat softened bludger had appeared in Australia and New Zealand: the pimping and the bullying were eliminated, and the parasitical tendencies reduced to mere cadging or sponging.

First Known Use of bludge

1899, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for bludge

back-formation from British argot bludger pimp, probably contraction of bludgeoner one wielding a bludgeon, from bludgeon

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Cite this Entry

“Bludge.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Aug. 2021.

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