Alternative formsEdit


  • The word originated in the United States


bumbershoot (plural bumbershoots)

  1. (slang, humorous, US) An umbrella, especially when erroneously seen as a stereotypically English accessory
    It smells like rain. Perhaps we should take along a bumbershoot.
    • 1912, L. Frank Baum, Sky Island
      "It--it belongs in our family," said Button-Bright, beginning to eat and speaking between bites. "This umbrella has been in our family years, an' years, an' years. But it was tucked away up in our attic an' no one ever used it 'cause it wasn't pretty."
      "Don't blame 'em much," remarked Cap'n Bill, gazing at it curiously. "It's a pretty old-lookin' bumbershoot."
    • 1968, Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman (lyrics), Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
      "Me ol' bamboo, me ol' bamboo, you'd better never bother with me ol' bamboo, you can have me hat or me bumbershoot, but you'd better never bother with me ol' bamboo."
    • 1970, Walt Disney, The Aristocats
      "Napoleon: Wait a minute! Where's my hat? Where-- and somebody stole my bumbershoot!"

Usage notesEdit

  • Since c.1940 many Americans have mistakenly assumed the word is British slang, whereas in fact it is little known there.