from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A burden; a thing that must be carried.
  • n. an interest, right, burden, or liability attached to a title of land, such as a lien or mortgage.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A burdensome and troublesome load; anything that impedes motion or action, or renders it difficult or laborious; clog; impediment; hindrance; check.
  • n. A burden or charge upon property; a claim or lien upon an estate, which may diminish its value.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. See encumbrance, encumbrancer.

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

  • n. any obstruction that impedes or is burdensome
  • n. an onerous or difficult concern
  • n. a charge against property (as a lien or mortgage)


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • But where? without going to the Western Country, I am unable, as yet to decide; as the best, if not all the Land I have on the East side of the Aleghanies are under Leases, or some kind of incumbrance or another.

    The Journal of Negro History, Volume 2, 1917

  • If you have an ambition to do anything in the world, or to be anything more than a plodding character in the tide of human life, see to it that the man whom you are to marry is one who is competent to aid you in the attainment of noble and useful things, instead of being an "incumbrance" and a hinderance.

    Plain facts for old and young : embracing the natural history and hygiene of organic life.

  • If she have children, the estate is considered to belong to them, while she is but an "incumbrance" upon it.

    History of Woman Suffrage, Volume I

  • The costume of the East certainly does not exaggerate the fatal progress of time; if a figure becomes too portly, the flowing robe conceals the incumbrance which is aggravated by a western dress; he, too, who wears a turban has little dread of grey hairs; a grizzly beard indeed has few charms, but whether it were the lenity of time or the skill of his barber in those arts in which Asia is as experienced as Europe, the beard of the master of the divan became the rest of his appearance, and flowed to his waist in rich dark curls, lending additional dignity to a countenance of which the expression was at the same time grand and benignant.

    Tancred Or, The New Crusade

  • I have there taken a small, genteel business — the profits of which will be no incumbrance.

    Letter 300

  • It's not an incumbrance or anything, so it makes sense ...

    Red-Band Horror: Bloody Trailers for Survival of the Dead and [REC] 2 | /Film

  • If (sorry, when) Pakistan falls, it will allow the West (and India) a freer hand in tackling extreme Islamists without the incumbrance of a useless and venal 'ally'.

    On Thursday, the Legg report will be published along with...

  • Yet far from finding comfort in this addition to her family, Mrs Harrel proved to her nothing more than a trouble and an incumbrance; with no inherent resources, she was continually in search of occasional supplies; she fatigued Cecilia with wonder at the privacy of her life, and tormented her with proposals of parties and entertainments.


  • But the length of its course, even when thus reduced, is still a considerable difficulty, and a great incumbrance on the hypothesis.

    The Journal of a Mission to the Interior of Africa, in the Year 1805

  • When it comes to murder for gain, or murder to remove incumbrance, it is a prevalent crime.

    On Thursday, the Legg report will be published along with...


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.