Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A pie formerly made from the edible organs of a deer or hog.
  • idiom eat humble pie To be forced to apologize abjectly or admit one's faults in humiliating circumstances.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. a pie made from the offal of deer or hog
  • n. humility, being humble

Etymologies

Alteration (influenced by humble) of obsolete umble pie : Middle English umbles, edible animal organs (variant of numbles, from Norman French nombles, from Old French, loin of veal, probably from alteration of Latin lumbulus, diminutive of lumbus, loin) + pie1.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
The expression derives from umble pie, the original name of the offal meat pie, considered inferior food. In medieval times the pie was often served to lower-class people. Although "umbles" and the modern word "humble" are etymologically unrelated, each word has appeared both with and without the initial "h" after the Middle Ages until the 19th century. (Wiktionary)

Examples

Sorry, no example sentences found.

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • or broiled cow

    January 27, 2011

  • 'Cross References:
    eat boiled crow'


    That's why we all love Wordnik. It can introduce you to things you never knew existed and leave you completely hanging.

    January 27, 2011

  • Excellent reestee.

    August 2, 2007

  • Eew. That's offal. ;->

    August 1, 2007

  • To eat humble pie (1830) is from umble pie (1648), pie made from umbles "edible inner parts of an animal" (especially deer), considered a low-class food. The similar sense of similar-sounding words (the "h" of humble was not pronounced then) converged in the pun. Umbles, meanwhile, is M.E. numbles "offal" (with loss of n- through assimilation into preceding article), from O.Fr. nombles "loin, fillet," from L. lumulus, dim. of lumbus "loin."

    August 1, 2007