muf·​fle ˈmə-fəl How to pronounce muffle (audio)
muffled; muffling ˈmə-f(ə-)liŋ How to pronounce muffle (audio)

transitive verb

: to wrap up so as to conceal or protect : envelop
obsolete : blindfold
: to wrap or pad with something to dull the sound
muffle the oarlocks
: to deaden the sound of
: keep down, suppress
muffled her anger

Examples of muffle in a Sentence

They tried to muffle the noise. I could hear their muffled voices from the next room.
Recent Examples on the Web Another video, recorded moments later, shows the same drone veering left as loud air raid sirens muffle the propeller’s noise. Vasco Cotovio, CNN, 2 Apr. 2024 The loose and meteorite-battered regolith that forms the Moon’s outer layer tends to muffle seismic waves from underneath. IEEE Spectrum, 14 Mar. 2024 He was photographed making funny faces, trying to cover his mother’s mouth and screaming while covering his ears to muffle the sounds of overhead military planes. Clare Mulroy, USA TODAY, 7 Mar. 2024 On opening night, Staples muffled some of Nottage’s words so that a bit of the playwright’s poetry was lost. Mary Carole McCauley, Baltimore Sun, 9 Feb. 2024 Security moved a shuttle in front of the protest in an effort to muffle the disruption. Jaden Thompson, Variety, 10 Mar. 2024 His low desk was shoved into the corner furthest from the windows, as if Gussow had wanted to muffle the city’s distractions. Curbed, 26 Jan. 2024 The cartoon showed a FWS biologist with a necktie muffling his mouth—to prevent him from speaking the truth. TIME, 8 Feb. 2024 Then Mack held her mother's mouth shut to muffle the screams as Schaefer beat her to death with the metal handle of a fruit bowl. Michael Ruiz, Fox News, 17 Jan. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'muffle.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English muflen

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of muffle was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near muffle

Cite this Entry

“Muffle.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


muf·​fle ˈməf-əl How to pronounce muffle (audio)
muffled; muffling ˈməf-(ə-)liŋ How to pronounce muffle (audio)
: to wrap up so as to conceal or protect
: to deaden the sound of
muffle a cry

More from Merriam-Webster on muffle

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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