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Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English encombraunce, from Old French encombrance, from encombrer.


encumbrance (countable and uncountable, plural encumbrances)

  1. Something that encumbers; a burden that must be carried.
    • 1912, Zane Grey, Riders of the Purple Sage, Chapter 8
      Some consideration was necessary to decide whether or not to leave his rifle there. On the return, carrying the girl and a pack, it would be added encumbrance []
  2. (law) an interest, right, burden, or liability attached to a title of land, such as a lien or mortgage.
  3. (law) One who is dependent on another.
    a widow without encumbrances, i.e. without children