dumb

(redirected from dumbness)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

dumb bunny

A stupid, silly, or naïve person, usually used in an affectionate or endearing (if condescending) manner. Ah, don't mind him; he's just a dumb bunny, but he is harmless. Oh, my darling! You are the sweetest dumb bunny I've ever known.
See also: bunny, dumb

dumb (something) down

To make something less complicated to accommodate a less intelligent, educated, or sophisticated audience. The professor decided to dumb down the course material a bit after most of his class failed the first exam. I think we ought to dumb the play down a bit; after all, most of the people coming to see it won't have a PhD in drama.
See also: down, dumb

play dumb

To pretend that one has no or little knowledge (of something); to act ignorant or uninformed (about something). I don't think I'm supposed to know that Rick is getting fired, so I'm just going to play dumb the next time I see him. A: "Did Tammy ask you about my date with Steve?" B: "Yeah, but I played dumb about it. I just couldn't handle more of her drama today."
See also: dumb, play

strike (someone) dumb

To render someone speechless, as due to a great surprise or shock. My father's sudden resignation from the company struck each of us dumb.
See also: dumb, strike

be struck dumb

To be rendered speechless or dumbfounded, as due to a great surprise or shock. We were all struck dumb by my father's announcement that he was resigning from the company.
See also: dumb, struck

a dumb priest never got a parish

You'll never get what you want if you don't ask for it. Although I'm nervous, I'm going to ask my boss for a raise. After all, a dumb priest never got a parish, so what's the worst that can happen if I ask?
See also: dumb, never, priest

dumb shit

1. rude slang Something stupid or trivial. I won't argue with you about this dumb shit for a second longer!
2. rude slang A stupid person. Listen, you dumb shit, I'm in charge here, so you better do what I say! Oh right, like I would listen to him—he's a dumb shit!
See also: dumb, shit

play ignorant

To pretend that one has no or little knowledge (of something); to act ignorant or uninformed (about something) I don't think I'm supposed to know that Rick is getting fired, so I'm just going to play ignorant the next time I see him. A: "Did Tammy ask you about my date with Steve?" B: "Yeah, but I played ignorant about it. I just couldn't handle more of her drama today." A: "What vase?" B: "Don't play ignorant with me! You know which one I mean!"
See also: play

deaf and dumb

dated Unable to hear or speak. Although this phrase was once commonly used without any offensive intent, it is no longer considered appropriate. The educational options for those who were once called "deaf and dumb" are now much more plentiful.
See also: and, deaf, dumb

(as) dumb as a post

Very stupid or dumb. Are you dumb as a post? Why did you think you could fix the washing machine on your own?
See also: dumb, post

dumb Dora

A stupid, flighty woman. Boy, she's a real dumb Dora—how'd she even get this job?
See also: dumb

deaf and dumb

unable to hear or speak. (Used without any intended malice, but no longer considered polite. Sometimes euphemized as "hearing and speech impaired.") Fred objected to being called deaf and dumb. Aunt Clara—she was deaf and dumb, you know—lived to be over 100.
See also: and, deaf, dumb

How dumb do you think I am?

Inf. Your question is insulting. I am not stupid. (Shows agitation. An answer is not expected or desired.) Mary: Are you really going to sell your new car? Sally: Come on! How dumb do you think I am? Tom: Do you think you could sneak into that theater without paying? Bob: Good grief! How dumb do you think I am?
See also: dumb, how, think

play ignorant

 and play dumb
to pretend to be ignorant [of something]. I played ignorant even though I knew about the surprise party. John played dumb when I asked him if he knew who had been on the telephone.
See also: play

dumb bunny

A stupid person, as in She was a bit of a dumb bunny but very nice. This expression implies some toleration or endearment of the person. [c. 1920]
See also: bunny, dumb

dumb as a post

AMERICAN, INFORMAL
If you describe someone as dumb as a post, you mean that they are very stupid. She's one of the most famous physicists in the country, and she's dumb as a post!
See also: dumb, post

be struck ˈdumb (with something)

be suddenly unable to speak (because of shock, fear, etc.): We were struck dumb at the sight of three armed soldiers in the kitchen.The witnesses were struck dumb with terror. ▶ ˈdumbstruck adj.: When I found out that I had won first prize, I was dumbstruck.
See also: dumb, struck

dumb down

v. Slang
To simplify something excessively in order to make it suitable for a less educated or less sophisticated audience: The researchers dumbed down the report before releasing it to the public.
See also: down, dumb

dumb bunny

n. a stupid person; an oaf. Who’s the dumb bunny in the double-knits?
See also: bunny, dumb

dumb cluck

n. a stupid oaf; a person as stupid as a chicken. Sally is not a dumb cluck, but she is sort of slow.
See also: cluck, dumb

dumb Dora

n. a stupid woman; a giddy woman. Who’s the dumb Dora with the blonde hair and long fingernails?
See also: dumb

dumb ox

n. a large and stupid person, usually a man. Do you think I’m going to argue with that big dumb ox?
See also: dumb, ox

dumb-ass

and stupid-ass
1. mod. stupid; dumb. (Usually derogatory.) That was a real dumb-ass thing to do. That is so stupid-ass!
2. n. a stupid person. (Rude and derogatory.) Don’t be such a dumb-ass! You know what I mean!

dumb-dodo

(ˈdəmˈdodo)
n. a very stupid person. What a dumb-dodo you are!

dumb-dumb

and dum-dum
n. a stupid oaf; a dullard. Marvin is no dum-dum. He just looks that way.

dumb Dora

A dimwit female. The phrase was popularized by George Burns and Gracie Allen's vaudeville act in which Gracie played the hysterically illogical character that she later made famous under her own name during the pair's radio and television career. Chic Young, better known for his Blondie comic strip, illustrated a foolish flapper named Dumb Dora. The cartoon lasted under several other illustrators from 1924 till 1935, well before “dumb blonde” became all the rage.
See also: dumb
References in periodicals archive ?
But if dumbness means the inability to make connections--historical connections, logical connections--one can begin to see how daily reporting would have that effect.
Therefore, they glory in dumbness and praise confusion.
He never ceased struggling to voice the dumbness of things: `the uttered look'.
The critique of metaphysical prejudice and the forces of dumbness (which is what deconstruction was really always about) has been beaten by the new anti-intellectual fundamentalism, which seeks to bring us back to the Dark Ages, save that no one will be allowed to wear black
He isn't aware of this, isn't aware of how his willed dumbness is connected to the despair he feels about his choices and his confusion about being a man.
The prevalence of such rhetorical dumbness and manipulation in political and journalistic speech suggests a cynical, that the public is either too stupid to see through these lazy or evasive tactics or, even worse, too apathetic to care.
Citing a news story featuring anonymous quotes, Gingrich explained that one thing that never works for any administration is secrecy, "particularly secrecy in defense of dumbness.
We might have found the end of history (again), a place where the passionate nationalisms of the last seven hundred years are rendered irrelevant by the twinned forces of the global marketplace (and the economic payoff perpetually promised therein) and the serene dumbness and short memory of the video-age American educational system.
In chapter 5, Ezekiel's dumbness is interpreted as an intermittent psychosomatic affliction ('conversion mutism'), interrupted by episodes of 'prophetic' speech.
For the past year or so, cultural critics have been ranting about the rise of dumbness as the dominant motif of American popular culture.
A substantial doom section of The Bell Curve is devoted to "dysgenics," the reverse of eugenics--the fear that high fertility rates among those of low mental prowess will swamp society with dumbness.
Sports have become a religion, athletic contests with millions of pursuivants, fans devotees of radio talk shows and all those glutinizing sports announcers and broadcasting oafs who for impressionable youngsters have made dumbness even fashionable.
presidents, writes, "Mass dumbness is vital to modern society.
Before tackling the question of why our opposition politicians can't get worked up about education in any long-term way, I'd like to suggest how bad I think the schools really are using the shorthand of numbness and dumbness.
When Isabel later broods over it during her night-long meditation in chapter 42, it is "the house of darkness, the house of dumbness, the house of suffocation.