sna·​fu | \ sna-ˈfü How to pronounce snafu (audio) , ˈsna-ˌfü \

Definition of snafu

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a situation marked by errors or confusion : muddle also : an error causing such a situation a scheduling snafu



Definition of snafu (Entry 2 of 3)

: snarled or stalled in confusion : awry


snafued; snafuing; snafus

Definition of snafu (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

: to bring into a state of confusion

Examples of snafu in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Barton has criticized Brown for an election-day snafu in the 2018 primary. Bill Laitner, Detroit Free Press, "GOP Sheriff Bouchard seeks 6th term as Oakland County trends blue," 14 Oct. 2020 The way her performances jibed with her at-times-wild personal life proved irresistible to the early 2000s’ unchecked gossip media, which magnified her every sartorial, romantic, or parenting snafu. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "Why the ‘Free Britney’ Saga Feels So Familiar," 6 Oct. 2020 Fans at home were quick to judge the show, and Banks in particular, for the snafu. Leah Rocketto, Woman's Day, "A 'DWTS' Elimination Mishap Had Viewers Begging For Tom Bergeron's Return," 6 Oct. 2020 Due to a snafu on the city’s part in drafting the ballot questions, Question G contains outdated language about ending the mayor’s power to exercise a line-item veto on the budget. Talia Richman,, "Consider the questions: Referendums, as well as candidates, appear on Maryland ballots," 2 Oct. 2020 Jessica Armstrong, 28, had witnesses to her stretching snafu. Rachel Wolfe, WSJ, "Stretching Breaks Can Be Hazardous to Your Health—and Dignity," 1 Oct. 2020 Today, though, an apparent temporary snafu is showing just how simple such a free upgrade could be for many Control players on current-generation systems, at least. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Control snafu shows how one publisher is struggling with next-gen upgrades," 11 Sep. 2020 The actor's Avengers costar Mark Ruffalo offered him some support after the social media snafu, telling Evans that in comparison to the actions of Donald Trump, the photos weren't that bad., "Chris Evans Breaks His Silence After Accidentally Sharing That Private Photo," 14 Sep. 2020 As last night's snafu highlights, though, neither of these issues applies for players who purchased the Digital Deluxe Edition of Control, which also includes a full DLC season pass. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Control snafu shows how one publisher is struggling with next-gen upgrades," 11 Sep. 2020

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


circa 1941, in the meaning defined above


1942, in the meaning defined above


1943, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for snafu


situation normal all fucked up (fouled up)

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Time Traveler for snafu

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The first known use of snafu was circa 1941

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Last Updated

26 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Snafu.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Oct. 2020.

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How to pronounce snafu (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of snafu

chiefly US, somewhat informal : a problem that makes a situation difficult or confusing

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