From Middle English tumben, tomben, from Old English tumbian (“to tumble, leap, dance”), from Proto-Germanic *tūmōną (“to turn round”). Cognate with Middle High German tumen (“to turn round”), Icelandic tumba (“to tumble”). See tumble.
tumb (third-person singular simple present tumbs, present participle tumbing, simple past and past participle tumbed)
- (intransitive, archaic) To tumble; jump; dance.
Borrowed in the 19th century from written Middle High German tump, from Old High German tumb. The inherited form of this word is dumm (Central and Low German) alongside tumm (Upper German; archaic).
tumb (comparative tumber, superlative am tumbsten or am tumbesten)
- (rare, literary, dated) simple-minded; naive; oafish
Old High German
From Proto-Germanic *dumbaz, whence also Old Saxon dumb, Old English dumb, Old Norse dumbr, Gothic 𐌳𐌿𐌼𐌱𐍃 (dumbs). Ultimately from Proto-Indo-European *dʰewbʰ-.
- German: tumb; dumm (influenced by Central and Low German)