Definitions

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

  • n. Chiefly British Slang Printed matter, such as pamphlets, forms, or memorandums, especially of an official nature and deemed of little interest or importance.
  • n. Chiefly British Slang Toilet paper.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Toilet paper.
  • n. Useless papers; now especially official documents, standardized forms, sales and marketing print material etc.

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

  • n. reading materials (documents, written information) that you must read and deal with but that you think are extremely boring

Etymologies

Short for bum fodder : bum2 + fodder.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Shortened form of bumfodder. (Wiktionary)

Examples

Comments

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  • "'Here,' he'd said, appearing abruptly out of the dressing room with guitar and drum. He'd handed her a small brown envelope. 'I found these, going through my dad's old bumf in Inverness. I thought you'd maybe want them.'"
    —Diana Gabaldon, Drums of Autumn (NY: Dell, 1997), 78

    January 17, 2010

  • Bumf: That portion of the enormous mass of official correspondence which was used for a more undignified purpose than originally intended. Later applied more generally to correspondence and literature of little value.

    This was an abbreviation of ‘bumfodder’ current from 1889 as schoolboys’ slang for ‘toilet paper’. In the war it was applied to official correspondence, most of which was viewed as unnecessary. It has acquired general currency for paperwork since World War I. Also spelt ‘bumph’.

    April 15, 2008

  • See also bumpf.

    January 5, 2008