Etymology
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bungle (v.)

"to work or act clumsily," 1520s, origin obscure. OED suggests imitative; perhaps a mix of boggle and bumble, or perhaps [Skeat] from a Scandinavian word akin to Swedish bangla "to work ineffectually," Old Swedish bunga "to strike" (related to German Bengel "cudgel," also "rude fellow"). Related: Bungled; bungling.

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bungle (n.)

"a clumsy piece of work," 1650s, from bungle (v.).

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bungling (n.)

"clumsy workmanship," 1660s, verbal noun from bungle (v.).

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bungler (n.)

"one who works clumsily," 1530s, agent noun from bungle (v.).

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bungling (adj.)

"prone to bungle, clumsy, awkward," 1580s, present-participle adjective from bungle (v.). Related: Bunglingly.

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flub (v.)

"botch, bungle," 1924, American English, of uncertain origin, perhaps suggested by fluff, flop, etc. Related: Flubbed; flubbing. As a noun, by 1952.

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ferhoodle (v.)

"to confuse, perplex," by 1956, from Pennsylvania German verhuddle "to confuse, tangle," related to German verhudeln "to bungle, botch." Related: Ferhoodled; ferhoodling.

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butcher (v.)

1560s, "kill or slaughter for food or market," from butcher (n.). Figuratively, "bungle, botch, spoil by bad work," 1640s. Related: Butchered; butchering. Re-nouned 1640s as butcherer.

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muddle (v.)

1590s, "destroy the clarity of" (a transferred sense); literal sense ("to bathe in mud") is from c. 1600; perhaps frequentative formation from mud, or from Dutch moddelen "to make (water) muddy," from the same Proto-Germanic source. Sense of "to make muddy" is from 1670s; that of "make confused, bewilder" is recorded by 1680s. Meaning "to bungle" is from 1885. Related: Muddled; muddling.

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