falter vs stumble what difference

what is difference between falter and stumble

English

Alternative forms

  • faulter (archaic)

Etymology

From Middle English falteren (to stagger), further origin unknown. Possibly from a North Germanic source such as Old Norse faltrask (be encumbered). May also be a frequentative of fold, although the change from d to t is unusual.

Pronunciation

  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈfɔːltə(r)/, /ˈfɒltə(r)/

Noun

falter

  1. unsteadiness.

Translations

Verb

falter (third-person singular simple present falters, present participle faltering, simple past and past participle faltered)

  1. To waver or be unsteady; to weaken or trail off.
    • 1672, Richard Wiseman, A Treatise of Wounds
      He found his legs falter.
  2. (transitive, intransitive) To stammer; to utter with hesitation, or in a weak and trembling manner.
    • 1807, Lord Byron, Childish Recollections
      And here he faltered forth his last farewell.
  3. To fail in distinctness or regularity of exercise; said of the mind or of thought.
    • 1832, Isaac Taylor, Saturday Evening
      Here indeed the power of distinctly conceiving of space and distance falters.
  4. To stumble.
  5. (figuratively) To lose faith or vigor; to doubt or abandon (a cause).
    • And remember, comrades, your resolution must never falter.
  6. To hesitate in purpose or action.
  7. To cleanse or sift, as barley.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Halliwell to this entry?)

Translations

References



English

Etymology

From Proto-Germanic *stam- (to trip up; to stammer, stutter), thereby related to German stumm (mute), Dutch stom (dumb). Doublet of stammer.

Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /ˈstʌmbəl/
  • Rhymes: -ʌmbəl

Noun

stumble (plural stumbles)

  1. A fall, trip or substantial misstep.
  2. An error or blunder.
  3. A clumsy walk.

Synonyms

  • (a blunder): blooper, blunder, boo-boo, defect, error, fault, faux pas, fluff, gaffe, lapse, mistake, slip, thinko
  • See also Thesaurus:error

Translations

Verb

stumble (third-person singular simple present stumbles, present participle stumbling, simple past and past participle stumbled)

  1. (intransitive) To trip or fall; to walk clumsily.
  2. (intransitive) To make a mistake or have trouble.
  3. (transitive) To cause to stumble or trip.
  4. (transitive, figuratively) To mislead; to confound; to cause to err or to fall.
    • One thing more stumbles me in the very foundation of this hypothesis.
  5. To strike or happen (upon a person or thing) without design; to fall or light by chance; with on, upon, or against.
    • 1680, John Dryden, Ovid’s Epistles
      He [Ovid] had stumbled, by some inadvertency, upon the privacies of Livia [] in a bath.
    • 1754, Christopher Smart, Snake
      Forth as she waddled in the brake, / A grey goose stumbled on a snake.

Derived terms

  • stumble across
  • stumble against
  • stumble on
  • stumble upon

Translations

See also

  • stumbling block

Further reading

  • Douglas Harper (2001–2021), “stumble”, in Online Etymology Dictionary.

Anagrams

  • tumbles

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