cumbersome

adjective
cum·​ber·​some | \ ˈkəm-bər-səm How to pronounce cumbersome (audio) \

Definition of cumbersome

1 : unwieldy because of heaviness and bulk a cumbersome package
2 : slow-moving : ponderous cumbersome administrative procedures
3 dialect : burdensome, troublesome

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Other Words from cumbersome

cumbersomely adverb
cumbersomeness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for cumbersome

Synonyms

awkward, bunglesome, clumsy, clunky, cranky, cumbrous, ponderous, ungainly, unhandy, unwieldy

Antonyms

handy

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Choose the Right Synonym for cumbersome

heavy, weighty, ponderous, cumbrous, cumbersome mean having great weight. heavy implies that something has greater density or thickness than the average of its kind or class. a heavy child for his age weighty suggests having actual and not just relative weight. a load of weighty boxes ponderous implies having great weight because of size and massiveness with resulting great inertia. ponderous elephants in a circus parade cumbrous and cumbersome imply heaviness and bulkiness that make for difficulty in grasping, moving, carrying, or manipulating. wrestled with the cumbrous furniture early cameras were cumbersome and inconvenient

Examples of cumbersome in a Sentence

Squad members, already decked out in cumbersome chemical suits, put on masks and rubber gloves. — Ray Wilkinson, Newsweek, 11 Mar. 1991 He got the approval of the higher-ups, but the course was scuttled by members of his own department, who devised all kinds of cumbersome, silly requirements and prerequisites. — Alice Munro, New Yorker, 20 Mar. 1989 He cut some segments of the 2" pine but discovered that … a cumbersome system of braces would be needed to hold the sides straight. — John Updike, Couples, 1968 The application process is cumbersome and time-consuming. Her expanded job title is really cumbersome.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Carpet cleaners are much heavier to push and more cumbersome to use than traditional vacuum cleaners. Sarah Bogdan, Good Housekeeping, "The Best Carpet Cleaners to Buy in 2019," 15 Jan. 2019 There’s also something inviting about just jumping on a scooter that feels much less cumbersome. Andrew J. Hawkins, The Verge, "Unagi is the $1,190 electric scooter you won’t want to share with anyone," 17 Nov. 2018 Right now, some records are shared by fax or phone, which can be cumbersome and time-consuming, physicians say. Melanie Grayce West, WSJ, "New York City Tries to Link Nexus of Doctors Serving the Homeless," 26 Jan. 2019 Cloud Clipboard A year ago, there were numerous, though cumbersome ways to transfer a file from one PC to another: email, chat, saving it to the cloud, a USB stick, and so on. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "What's new in Windows 10 Insider Build 17666: 'Cloud Clipboard,' Sets improvements and more," 9 May 2018 While multi-year developmental programs are by no means disappearing, the idea is to circumvent some of the more bureaucratic and cumbersome elements of the acquisition process. Kris Osborn, Fox News, "Air Force cites need to defend against enemy's hypersonic weapons," 19 Sep. 2018 But that process is seen as much slower and more cumbersome than resorting to the panels that have been created specially just for the three Nafta members. Jacob M. Schlesinger, WSJ, "U.S., Mexico Agree to Weaken Rights to Dispute Trade Practices," 27 Aug. 2018 The process of amending the Constitution is extremely cumbersome, requiring both supermajorities in Congress and ratification by a staggering 75 percent of the states. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "It’s ridiculous that it’s unconstitutional for Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to run for president," 12 Dec. 2018 The waiver process would be more cumbersome, requiring the school system to publicly advertise the interim superintendent job and then explain to the state why Perille is more qualified than any licensed applicant. James Vaznis, BostonGlobe.com, "Interim schools chief ready to make ‘important moves’," 29 June 2018

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

1535, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for cumbersome

see cumber entry 1

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Statistics for cumbersome

Last Updated

16 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cumbersome

The first known use of cumbersome was in 1535

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More Definitions for cumbersome

cumbersome

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of cumbersome

: hard to handle or manage because of size or weight
: complicated and hard to do
: long and difficult to read, say, etc.

cumbersome

adjective
cum·​ber·​some | \ ˈkəm-bər-səm How to pronounce cumbersome (audio) \

Kids Definition of cumbersome

: hard to handle or manage because of size or weight

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Comments on cumbersome

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