stumble upon (someone or something)

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stumble upon (someone or something)

1. Literally, to trip on someone or something with one's foot. I wasn't watching where I was going and stumbled upon the root of a tree. I entered the living room and nearly stumbled upon someone who was asleep on the floor.
2. To find, discover, or happen upon someone or something casually or by chance. I stumbled upon this fantastic little café the other day. The police officer stumbled upon a couple of thieves trying to break into the building. While researching ways of boosting the immune system, the team ended up stumbling upon a remarkable new method of treating cancer.
See also: stumble, upon
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
A group of biologists stumble upon an ancient, untouched ecosystem in a labyrinthine network of caves beneath a 13th-century abbey in Romania.
South River Incident is murder mystery about a psychopathic protagonist who haunts the past and present of a woman unfortunate enough to stumble upon the body of his latest victim.
ANYONE who had the good fortune to stumble upon Sly Raccoon will by now be well aware of the fun to be had with a raccoon, a big pink hippo and bespectacled tortoise.
They stumble upon the poor invisible Ollie and face new challenges as a result in this engaging story.
The two story lines ultimately intersect when James and his boyhood friend--lover Henry Lee parachute into the German countryside as World War II soldiers and stumble upon one of Ludwig's fairy-tale palaces.
The Spaniard never found an El Dorado of spices, but he did stumble upon Ecuador's source of the Amazon River, following it across Brazil before sailing back to Spain and royal acclaim.
Every now and then, you stumble upon a reference book that you just don't want to put down.
Forty years later the crew of a salvage tug - including Gabriel Byrne, Julianna Margulies (left) and Ron Eldard - suddenly stumble upon the deserted ship in a sea mist and misguidedly smell a fortune beckoning.
And then there are those who become so fortified and determined to initiate change for the betterment of society, that, irregardless of the obstacles they may stumble upon, they find the means to remove the barriers.