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

  • n. A blow with a blunt object.
  • n. The muffled sound produced by or as if by a blow with a blunt object; a thud.
  • transitive v. To beat with or as if with a blunt object so as to produce a muffled sound or thud.
  • transitive v. Informal To beat soundly or thoroughly; drub.
  • intransitive v. To hit or fall in such a way as to produce a thump; pound.
  • intransitive v. To walk with heavy steps; stump.
  • intransitive v. To throb audibly.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. a blow that produces a muffled sound
  • n. the sound of such a blow; a thud
  • v. to hit (someone or something) as if to make a thump
  • v. to thud or pound
  • v. to throb with a muffled rhythmic sound

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The sound made by the sudden fall or blow of a heavy body, as of a hammer, or the like.
  • n. A blow or knock, as with something blunt or heavy; a heavy fall.
  • intransitive v. To give a thump or thumps; to strike or fall with a heavy blow; to pound.
  • transitive v. To strike or beat with something thick or heavy, or so as to cause a dull sound.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To beat heavily, or with something thick and heavy.
  • To produce by a heavy blow or beating.
  • To beat; give a thump or blow.
  • n. plural Beating of the chest in horses due to spasmodic contractions of the diaphragm. It is similar to hiccough in man.
  • n. 3. In machinery, the dull sound caused by lost motion at some joint where the stress is alternately in one direction and another, and the hole is slightly larger than the pin from wear or mal-adjustment.
  • n. A heavy blow, or the sound made by such a blow; a blow with a club, the fist, or anything that gives a thick, heavy sound; a bang: as, to give one a thump.

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

  • v. hit hard with the hand, fist, or some heavy instrument
  • n. a heavy dull sound (as made by impact of heavy objects)
  • n. a heavy blow with the hand
  • v. move rhythmically
  • v. make a dull sound


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

Probably of imitative origin.



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