blunder

verb
blun·​der | \ˈblən-dər \
blundered; blundering\ ˈblən-​d(ə-​)riŋ \

Definition of blunder 

(Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to move unsteadily or confusedly In their exhaustion they often blundered against each other …— Norman Mailer

2 : to make a mistake through stupidity, ignorance, or carelessness blundered by not acting sooner

transitive verb

1 : to utter stupidly, confusedly, or thoughtlessly blundered an apology

2 : to make a stupid, careless, or thoughtless mistake in blundering matters through ignorance …— Rafael Sabatini

blunder

noun

Definition of blunder (Entry 2 of 2)

: a gross error or mistake resulting usually from stupidity, ignorance, or carelessness a costly tactical blunder

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Other Words from blunder

Verb

blunderer \ ˈblən-​dər-​ər \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for blunder

Noun

error, mistake, blunder, slip, lapse mean a departure from what is true, right, or proper. error suggests the existence of a standard or guide and a straying from the right course through failure to make effective use of this. procedural errors mistake implies misconception or inadvertence and usually expresses less criticism than error. dialed the wrong number by mistake blunder regularly imputes stupidity or ignorance as a cause and connotes some degree of blame. diplomatic blunders slip stresses inadvertence or accident and applies especially to trivial but embarrassing mistakes. a slip of the tongue lapse stresses forgetfulness, weakness, or inattention as a cause. a lapse in judgment

Examples of blunder in a Sentence

Verb

We blundered along through the woods until we finally found the trail. Another skier blundered into his path. The government blundered by not acting sooner.

Noun

The accident was the result of a series of blunders. fixed a minor blunder in the advertising flyer
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Mr Grayling’s loyalty to the prime minister and to the Brexit cause mean he may be allowed to blunder on. The Economist, "British railways are reduced to chaos by a botched timetable change," 7 June 2018 The unboxing is meant to increase suspense, but the nonstop blundering only provides unease. Kelly Conaboy, The Cut, "Please Face It: Instagram Story ‘Unboxing’ Does Not Work," 13 July 2018 This bumbling, bungling, blundering media misadventure quite possibly changed the course of Magic history. Mike Bianchi, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Worst day of Dwight Howard's life was also one of worst days in Orlando Magic history," 18 June 2018 In one of the most dangerous moments in the Cold War, in 1983, US-Moscow tensions nearly led to the two rivals blundering into nuclear war. Stephen Collinson, CNN, "Trump's toughness on Russia judged against his predecessors," 9 June 2018 After a mix-up by their blundering fertility doctor, a couple is mistakenly impregnated with the wrong child. Matthew J. Palm, OrlandoSentinel.com, "New Pegasus PlayLab theater festival brings new works to UCF," 7 June 2018 Here’s the hardest thing to understand about the Rally Goose, the confused Canada goose that blundered into Comerica Park (and our hearts) during a rain delay in Wednesday’s Tigers-Angels game. Si.com Staff, SI.com, "Nine Innings: The Indians' Surprisingly Bad Bullpen, the State of the NL West and Culberson's Magic," 4 June 2018 Tan sacrificed, but more likely blundered, a pawn in the early middlegame and then allowed Black to gather her pieces around her king. Chris Chase, BostonGlobe.com, "Chess notes," 20 May 2018 Many felt that the program had been unfairly seized upon as a distraction by conservative opponents of gun control, who preferred to focus on blundering by the district and the sheriff’s office. David Fleshler, Sun-Sentinel.com, "School district shuts down information after Stoneman Douglas shooting," 12 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The company lost $96 million in market value Wednesday, with shares falling to a 52-week low of $48.33, after Forbes reported that Schnatter made a racial slur during a conference call aimed at helping him avoid public relations blunders. Grace Schneider, The Courier-Journal, "Analysts: Papa John's better off without a key ingredient — the founder," 12 July 2018 Forbes reported that the call in May was intended to help Mr. Schnatter avoid future public relations blunders involving race. New York Times, "Racial Slur Leads to Papa John’s Founder Quitting Chairman Post," 11 July 2018 A few years ago, nobody from his Dinka tribe would allow their daughters to marry him for fear that his genes carried some inheritable blunder. Deirdre Fernandes, BostonGlobe.com, "An education in hope," 7 July 2018 But the resilience shown after all the turmoil, an early deficit and David De Gea’s blunder proved Hierro and this Spanish team is more than one coach. 2. Juan Pimiento, chicagotribune.com, "Spain, Portugal thrill, Mexico, Iceland suprise and the best of the World Cup weekend," 17 June 2018 Still, a new regime is not responsible for previous blunders. Mitch Albom, Detroit Free Press, "Mitch Albom: Detroit Lions draft picks easy to judge, hard to be right about," 29 Apr. 2018 Both goalkeepers endured inconsistent seasons, with Karius eventually costing Liverpool the Champions League after two blunders in the final against Real Madrid. SI.com, "Jurgen Klopp Makes Bold Decision in Liverpool's Summer Search for New Goalkeeper," 23 June 2018 This isn't bad luck for Williams or a simple blameless blunder in the rules. Mattie Kahn, Glamour, "Serena Williams Will Return to Grand Slam Tennis At a Lower Rank Because the Sport Still Treats Childbirth Like an Injury," 22 May 2018 Francis’s strong defense of a bishop now at the heart of Chile’s scandal has been one of the worst blunders of his papacy, calling into question his commitment to fighting abuse and coverups. Nicole Winfield, BostonGlobe.com, "From pariah to VIP: Whistle-blower in Chile’s sex-abuse scandal awaits audience with pope," 24 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'blunder.' 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 blunder

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Noun

1681, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for blunder

Verb

Middle English blundren, probably of Scandinavian origin; akin to Old Norse blunda to shut one's eyes, doze, Norwegian dialect blundra

Noun

noun derivative of blunder entry 1

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Dictionary Entries near blunder

Blum

blume

Blumea

blunder

blunderbush

blunderbuss

blunderhead

Statistics for blunder

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Time Traveler for blunder

The first known use of blunder was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for blunder

blunder

verb

English Language Learners Definition of blunder

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to move in an awkward or confused way

: to make a stupid or careless mistake

blunder

noun

English Language Learners Definition of blunder (Entry 2 of 2)

: a bad mistake made because of stupidity or carelessness

blunder

verb
blun·​der | \ˈblən-dər \
blundered; blundering

Kids Definition of blunder

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to move in a clumsy way

2 : to make a mistake

blunder

noun

Kids Definition of blunder (Entry 2 of 2)

: a bad or stupid mistake

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Comments on blunder

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