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Etymology 1[edit]

Unknown and debated origin. Possibly a shortening of Chunder Loo, rhyming slang for spew (said to be derived from the cartoon character “Chunder Loo of Akim Foo”, drawn by Norman Lindsay for a series of boot-polish advertisements in the early 1900s), but the rhyming slang usage is not recorded. The derivation from some supposed nautical phrase "*Watch under!", used to warn people on lower decks that someone above was vomiting over the side of the ship, is wholly unsubstantiated and likely folk etymology. Also possibly from some dialectal pronunciation of thunder. First attested in c. 1950.


chunder (countable and uncountable, plural chunders)

  1. (UK, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, slang) Vomit. [from 1950.]
    • 1996 April 24, Andrew Shore, “Nose Chunder (was Re: Grogan Epidemic at ERR)”, in alt.tasteless[1] (Usenet):
      I had puke streamers hanging from both nostrils; it wasn′t as watery as my chunder usually is (from drinking).
  2. (UK, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, slang) An act of vomiting.
    • 2001 September 9, John Dean, “‘chunder’”, in alt.usage.english[2] (Usenet):
      I would guess it points up the difference between the involuntary chunder where you cannot choose the time place or direction, and the self-induced chunder which facilitates further consumption of alcohol after your theoretical limit is reached.
  3. Heavy, sticky snow that makes snowsports difficult.


chunder (third-person singular simple present chunders, present participle chundering, simple past and past participle chundered)

  1. (Australia, New Zealand, Britain, slang) To throw up, to vomit, particularly from excessive alcohol consumption.
    • 1980, Colin Hay and Ron Strykert (lyrics and music), “Down Under”, performed by Men at Work:
      I come from a land down under / Where beer does flow and men chunder / Can't you hear, can't you hear the thunder? / You better run, you better take cover
    • 2008, Isabelle Young, Tony Gherardin, Central and South America, Lonely Planet, page 70,
      There are plenty of winding roads, diesel fumes, crowded public transport and various less than sweet odours to get you chundering when you′re on the move in this part of the world, so take a good supply of motion sickness remedies if you know you′re susceptible to this.
    • 2009, William Efford, Picaroon[3], page 313:
      “You might have chundered,” said Kate, laughing, “but at least you didn′t get any on yourself—sign of a true lady.”
    • 2010, Norman Jorgensen, Jack′s Island[4], page 3:
      Pretty soon just about everyone onboard was leaning over the rail chundering like sick dogs.

Etymology 2[edit]

Perhaps by confusion with chunter.


chunder (third-person singular simple present chunders, present participle chundering, simple past and past participle chundered)

  1. Of a motor vehicle: to rumble loudly, to roar.
    • 2005, Robert Newman, The Fountain at the Centre of the World[5], page 114:
      The truck chundered and rattled.
    • 2007, George Melnyk, Great Canadian Film Directors[6], page 215:
      As their rented van chunders along the highway, John′s voiceover is heard, contemplating the compulsion that drives men to continue using juvenile punk monikers into their mid-thirties.
    • 2008, Jill Dickin Schinas, A Family Outing in the Atlantic[7], page 156:
      He taxied his plane carefully to the end of the strip and then went further on, into the rough grass. Then, with full flap and maximum throttle, he came chundering along towards us.