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

  • adjective Difficult to handle because of weight or bulk.
  • adjective Difficult to use or deal with.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Burdensome; troublesome; embarrassing; vexatious: as, “cumbersome obedience,”
  • Inconvenient; awkward; unwieldy; unmanageable; not easily borne or managed: as, a cumbersome load; a cumbersome machine.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Burdensome or hindering, as a weight or drag; embarrassing; vexatious; cumbrous.
  • adjective Not easily managed.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective burdensome or hindering, as a weight or drag; vexatious; cumbrous.
  • adjective Not easily managed or handled; awkward
  • adjective Hard, difficult, demanding to handle or get around with

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

  • adjective difficult to handle or use especially because of size or weight
  • adjective not elegant or graceful in expression


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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  • That results in cumbersome procedures for many passengers.

    Air Passenger Screening Draws New Scrutiny

  • It also seems to me that on the core amnesty point, what the negotiators came up with was simultaneously unduly cumbersome from a humanitarian point of view while also not in any way appeasing restrictionist concerns.

    Matthew Yglesias » Better Immigration

  • In this “liberalised” regime why create, innovate and trade in cumbersome goods when one can make far more far quickly and with far less risk just by moving money (data) and money instruments between computers around the world?

    Coyote Blog » Blog Archive » What Climate Change Intevenionists Need to Prove

  • Italy is the last country to hold out against the European arrest warrant that lists 32 different crimes, including the hard-to-define one of xenophobia, that will do away what is often described as the cumbersome system of extradition.

    Italians block European arrest warrant

  • In contrast to all of this, Canada's approach to government intervention appears cumbersome, is reactive and apologetic, and in the end our methods are simply obsolete.

    The Role of Government in the Economy of the '90s

  • The most likely outcome of the grand-jury investigation, experts said, would be a report recommending administrative changes, which Dan Castleman , former chief of investigations at the Manhattan district attorney's office called a "cumbersome process" that could take years.

    Grand Jury Turns Focus on Agency

  • As a user, I find it cumbersome, which is something to seriously consider when choosing a blogging tool.

    Are You Using the Right Blogging Tool – Over the Long Term « Lorelle on WordPress

  • "Everything we did was either in a spreadsheet or Word document, or through e-mail," Maher, recalls the cumbersome manual process.

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  • They are not the suits you would actually use: the aim here is simulation, not replication, so they are merely very cumbersome, which is what the real suits would have to be.

    Home | Mail Online

  • Efforts to streamline local government, largely tabled this year as legislators grappled with property-tax issues, could gain momentum under a new coalition that is pushing for changes in a system described as cumbersome and redundant.

    The Indiana Law Blog


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  • I found this word in the new surfer mag. By Jhon Sage, The beaches filled with cumberson waves and spiral barrels brought surfers from everywhere

    October 28, 2010