From Middle English rumblen, romblen, rummelyn, frequentative form of romen (“to roar”), equivalent to rome + -le. Cognate with Dutch rommelen (“to rumble”), Low German rummeln (“to rumble”), German rumpeln (“to be noisy”), Danish rumle (“to rumble”), all of imitative origin.
rumble (plural rumbles)
- A low, heavy, continuous sound, such as that of thunder or a hungry stomach.
- The rumble from passing trucks made it hard to sleep at night.
- (slang) A street fight or brawl.
- A rotating cask or box in which small articles are smoothed or polished by friction against each other.
- (dated) A seat for servants, behind the body of a carriage.
- 1840-1841, Charles Dickens, Master Humphrey's Clock:
- Kit, well wrapped, […] was in the rumble behind.
- (intransitive) To make a low, heavy, continuous sound.
- If I don't eat, my stomach will rumble.
- I could hear the thunder rumbling in the distance.
- (transitive) To discover deceitful or underhanded behaviour.
- The police is going to rumble your hideout.
- (intransitive) To move while making a rumbling noise.
- The truck rumbled over the rough road.
- (slang, intransitive) To fight; to brawl.
- (video games, intransitive, of a game controller) to provide haptic feedback by vibrating.
- (transitive) To cause to pass through a rumble, or polishing machine.
- (obsolete) To murmur; to ripple.