From Middle English hamelen, from Old English hamelian (“to hamstring, mutilate”), from Proto-Germanic *hamalōną, *hamlōną (“to mutilate”), from Proto-Indo-European *kem- (“mutilated, hornless”). Cognate with German hammeln, hämmeln (“to geld”), Icelandic hamla (“to mutilate, maim”), Dutch hamel (“wether”).
- (obsolete, transitive) To mutilate; hamstring; cut away.
- (transitive) To cut out the balls of the feet of (dogs) so as to render them unfit for hunting.
- (intransitive) To walk lame; limp.
Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for hamble in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)