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From Middle English mommen (mutter, be silent) and Middle High German mummenschantze (game of chance as part of a masquerade, mime performance, revel), from Old French momen (mask) and chance (game of chance).



mumchance (comparative more mumchance, superlative most mumchance)

  1. Mute, or not speaking; silent.
    • 1966, Paul Scott, The Jewel in the Crown, p. 69
      I wrote Miss Crane off as mediocre because although she chatted quite pleasantly and intelligently over coffee she was mostly mumpchance at the dinner table. Oh, not mumpchance tout court.
    • 1978, Lawrence Durrell, Livia, Faber & Faber 1992 (Avignon Quintet), p. 446:
      The two little children stood mumchance, but with a kindly air.
    • 2001, Paula Marshall, Lord Hadleigh's Rebellion, Harlequin (Mills & Boon), 2008, page 124,
      If he did, he would remain mumchance about that, too.

Related termsEdit


mumchance (plural mumchances)

  1. An old game of chance played with cards in silence.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Decker to this entry?)
  2. A silent, stupid person.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Halliwell to this entry?)