Definitions

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

  • transitive v. To deal with clumsily or inefficiently; mismanage.
  • transitive v. To treat roughly; maltreat.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To handle badly, causing physical injury.
  • v. To handle incorrectly, to make a mistake in handling a thing or situation.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To handle ill or wrongly; to maltreat.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To maltreat.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. manage badly or incompetently
  • v. make a mess of, destroy or ruin

Etymologies

From mis- +‎ handle. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Who doesn't "mishandle" -- i.e., misplace, loose, forget where they left -- the tuition check, the gas bill, keys, glasses, the grocery list, and yes, even take-home work -- at least once in awhile?

    legitgov

  • The Department of Transportation issues statistics each month on the rate at which airlines "mishandle" luggage -- that is, don't deliver it to you with your flight.

    Why Your Bags

  • The Mets did not "mishandle" Church's injury - concussion management is generally trial and error

    MetsBlog.com

  • But the IG report shows that Gonzales did more than "mishandle" his notes, which included operational details on what he himself, somewhat ironically, called -- after it had leaked -- "one of the most highly protected [programs] in the United States ... a very, very secretive, protected program," and correspondence between congressional Intelligence Committee leaders and CIA chief Gen. Michael Hayden.

    TPMMuckraker

  • But the IG report shows that Gonzales did more than "mishandle" his notes, which included operational details on what he himself, somewhat ironically, called -- after it had leaked --

    legitgov

  • Instead there is advice on how bloggers should interact with their readers and a caution about how celebrities mishandle their public wrongdoings.

    Dale Carnegie's self-help bible gets a new life for the digital age

  • Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy as well as all of the alternative principal voice actors will be behind to mishandle the hothouse classics.

    Archive 2009-11-01

  • With the pensions negotiations edging towards farce, ministers fear that if they continue to mishandle the issues, there is a greater risk that they will lose the PR battle and the public could end up supporting the teachers and civil servants if and when they go on strike.

    The Age of Strife: pay packets and pensions divide coalition Britain

  • He did mishandle his book of checks when he was trying to put it on the counter.

    It Must Be Noon Somewhere : Bev Vincent

  • And so once more to top flight football, crucible of race relations debate in early 2012 Britain, amid suspicions that well-meaning bigwigs are preparing to mishandle another episode.

    Handshake is not the answer to Anton Ferdinand-John Terry stand-off

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