from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To propel oneself upward or over a distance in single quick motion or series of such motions.
  • intransitive verb To move suddenly and in one motion.
  • intransitive verb To move involuntarily, as in surprise.
  • intransitive verb To parachute from an aircraft.
  • intransitive verb Informal To act quickly; hustle.
  • intransitive verb To take prompt advantage; respond quickly.
  • intransitive verb To enter eagerly into an activity; plunge.
  • intransitive verb To begin or start. Often used with off:
  • intransitive verb To form an opinion or judgment hastily.
  • intransitive verb To make a sudden verbal attack; lash out.
  • intransitive verb To undergo a sudden and pronounced increase.
  • intransitive verb To rise suddenly in position or rank.
  • intransitive verb To change discontinuously or after a short period.
  • intransitive verb To be displaced by a sudden jerk.
  • intransitive verb To be displaced vertically or laterally because of improper alignment.
  • intransitive verb Computers To move from one set of instructions in a program to another out of sequence.
  • intransitive verb To move over an opponent's playing piece in a board game.
  • intransitive verb To make a jump bid in bridge.
  • intransitive verb Slang To be lively; bustle.
  • intransitive verb To leap over or across.
  • intransitive verb To leap onto.
  • intransitive verb Slang To spring upon in sudden attack; assault or ambush.
  • intransitive verb To move or start prematurely before.
  • intransitive verb To cause to leap.
  • intransitive verb To cause to increase suddenly.
  • intransitive verb To pass over; skip.
  • intransitive verb To raise in rank or position; promote.
  • intransitive verb To move a piece over (an opponent's piece) in a board game, often thereby capturing the opponent's piece.
  • intransitive verb To raise (a partner's bid) in bridge by more than is necessary.
  • intransitive verb To jump-start (a motor vehicle).
  • intransitive verb To leave (a course), especially through mishap.
  • intransitive verb To leave hastily; skip.
  • intransitive verb To leave (an organization, for example) suddenly or in violation of an agreement.
  • intransitive verb To seize or occupy illegally.
  • intransitive verb Vulgar Slang To have sexual intercourse with.
  • noun The act of jumping; a leap.
  • noun The distance covered by a jump.
  • noun An obstacle or span to be jumped.
  • noun A structure or course from which a jump is made.
  • noun A descent from an aircraft by parachute.
  • noun Sports Any of several track-and-field events in which contestants jump.


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

[Early Modern English, perhaps imitative of the sound of feet hitting with the ground after jumping. Idiom, jump the shark, after a 1977 episode of the television series Happy Days in which the character Arthur “the Fonz” Fonzarelli makes a show of bravery by jumping over a shark while on water skis (considered as an improbable and absurd plot incident marking the moment at which the series began to decline).]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English jumpen ("to walk quickly, run, jump"), probably of Middle Low German or North Germanic origin, ultimately from Proto-Germanic *gempanan, *gembanan (“to hop, skip, jump”), from Proto-Indo-European *gwʰemb- (“ to spring, hop, jump”). Cognate with Old Dutch gumpen ("to jump"), Low German jumpen ("to jump"), Middle High German gumpen, gampen ("to jump, hop") (dialectal German gampen), Danish gumpe ("to jolt"), Swedish gumpa ("to jump"), Danish gimpe ("to move up and down"), Middle English jumpren, jumbren ("to mix, jumble"). Related to jumble.


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    June 30, 2012