Derivative of 17th-century vernacular bam (“to trick, to con”), which is a derivative of bam in noun use (fraudster, cheat). Possibly from French embobiner
bamboozle (third-person singular simple present bamboozles, present participle bamboozling, simple past and past participle bamboozled)
- (informal) To con, defraud, trick, to make a fool of, to humbug or impose on someone.
- 1851, Herman Melville, Moby Dick, chapter 19
- “Look here, friend,” said I, “if you have anything important to tell us, out with it; but if you are only trying to bamboozle us, you are mistaken in your game; that’s all I have to say.”