Word of the Day : September 13, 2010

flounder

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verb FLOUN-der

Definition

1 : to struggle to move or obtain footing : thrash about wildly

2 : to proceed or act clumsily or ineffectually

Did You Know?

Despite the fact that "flounder" is a relatively common English verb, its origins in the language remain obscure. It is thought that it may be an alteration of an older verb, "founder." To founder is to become disabled, to give way or collapse, or to come to grief or fail. In the case of a waterborne vessel, to founder is to sink. The oldest of these senses of "founder," "to become disabled," was also used, particularly in reference to a horse and its rider, for the act of stumbling violently or collapsing. It may have been this sense of "founder" that, some 200 years later, appeared in altered form as "flounder" in the sense of "to stumble."


Examples

I'm not so sure they actually know what they are doing. They appear just to be floundering about.




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