Meaning of bungle in English:


Pronunciation /ˈbʌŋɡ(ə)l/

See synonyms for bungle

Translate bungle into Spanish


[with object]
  • Carry out (a task) clumsily or incompetently.

    ‘he bungled his first attempt to manage a group of professional players’
    • ‘a few individuals had bungled in handling the situation’
    • ‘First, while not unreasonable, the assumption that we would bungle the task of assigning rationality is speculative.’
    • ‘However, with a victory target of 226, Mon Repos bungled the task and finished at 105 for 8, to avoid a match defeat.’
    • ‘If I bungled this mission it would look horrible on my record.’
    • ‘He was supposed to be dead a year ago, but the Wildcard had bungled her assignment.’
    • ‘His memorable departure from the series came in 2002 after his on screen character, Hector, bungled an attempt to blow a killer pike out of the loch using a remote controlled boat and explosives.’
    • ‘Critics are blaming bungled attempts to find the right people to run the new Scottish Manufacturing Advisory Service after pitching the initial salary too low to attract the right calibre of candidate.’
    • ‘Within the opening 30 minutes of play, about five goal attempts were bungled as the players misdirected shots that could have easily been placed into the nets.’
    • ‘About 40 officers sealed off the bank and nearby streets before it emerged that the robbers had bungled the raid and fled empty handed.’
    • ‘A robber who bungled a post office raid left police the easiest of clues.’
    • ‘Another strand involves three inept gangsters and a dog, who bungle every job they attempt, and whose dog you just know is going to become a crucial part of the plot.’
    • ‘On 18 March, government troops bungled an attempt to remove cannon placed on the heights of Montmartre, which provoked the feared rebellion.’
    • ‘The European parliament has bungled its latest attempt to outlaw spam.’
    • ‘We must have botched the first task, because we've certainly bungled the second.’
    • ‘He faces 20 allegations including drinking alcohol while on call, botched surgery and bungled use of equipment.’
    • ‘Let's hope I don't bungle any of my assignments.’
    • ‘My antipathy is not the result of some journalistic hangover from years of writing and reading stories about bungled management, deadline-defying delays and vertiginous cost rises.’
    • ‘The FBI and the CIA seem to have bungled things, to put it gently.’
    • ‘But someone (don't ask who) bungled the order, and men and horses on the valley floor charged straight into firing cannons.’
    • ‘Fiddled expenses, lavish trips and bungled paperwork had become commonplace at the Paris headquarters, a national audit report concluded.’
    • ‘The Chinese bungled the experiments with this deadly virus and unwittingly unleashed it upon themselves and their neighbors.’
    mishandle, mismanage, mess up, make a mess of, botch, spoil, mar, ruin
    View synonyms


  • A task carried out in a clumsy or incompetent way.

    ‘a series of bureaucratic bungles over his visa status’
    • ‘But a minister should also be prepared to accept blame and responsibility for the mistakes and bungles made.’
    • ‘But the mistakes and bungles didn't stop at the conclusion of the war to end all wars.’
    • ‘They need to be told that they will not become criminals because of the department's bungles and blunders.’
    • ‘She had to be dropped from the newcomer category last month after an eligibility bungle because she had already been shortlisted for best female in 2000, but lost out out to Sonique.’
    • ‘But there's no proof that it would be free of bureaucratic bungles, or serve as a more effective early warning system against potential terrorist attacks.’
    • ‘And why these repeated banking bungles in the hi-tech city, supposedly the ultimate destination in India for software companies and foreign banks, alone?’
    • ‘Compensation for pensioners left out of pocket by Inland Revenue computer glitches is just the latest in a costly string of bungles, says the study by Computing magazine.’
    • ‘Raised on a diet of historical bungles, betrayals and defeats, we've hardly an ounce of self-belief left.’
    • ‘Surely, he cannot any longer be expected to bear the full brunt of our judicial and bureaucratic bungles.’
    • ‘The West Macs claim is likely to succeed only in a few small areas, a result of administrative bungles in the past.’
    • ‘The bungles allowed St Louis to draw level a second and third time after twice trailing by two runs late in the game.’
    • ‘Nobody has expressed regret that a series of bungles and questionable decisions drove a man to suicide.’
    • ‘Red-faced council officers claim the bungle occurred only because they were trying to save taxpayers’ money.’
    • ‘The bungle has been branded ‘dismal’ by a passenger group based in Manchester, which is calling on Network Rail and train companies to start planning ahead to make sure it never happens again.’
    • ‘It has also emerged that the cost of the huge bungle has risen still further, as red-faced officials have warned ministers that they are preparing to write off £14.4m paid out during the fiasco.’
    • ‘Today we know of a new bungle which will deliver an average debt to Australian families of an additional $400 to $800.’
    • ‘The bungle is attributed to haste and sloppiness.’
    • ‘Sky channel subscribers in York reacted angrily to the bungle, which could have led to monthly payments of £9 being taken out of their accounts for the next two years.’
    • ‘They claim the bungle may have helped to fuel the alarming childhood obesity crisis in the UK and associated problems such as heart disease and diabetes in later life.’
    • ‘The Government, when the bungle was first announced, estimated $500 million.’
    muddle, mess, tangle, jumble, entanglement, imbroglio
    View synonyms


Mid 16th century of unknown origin; compare with bumble.