Confuse



[kuh n-fyooz] /kənˈfyuz/

verb (used with object), confused, confusing.
1.
to perplex or bewilder:
The flood of questions confused me.
2.
to make unclear or indistinct:
The rumors and angry charges tended to confuse the issue.
3.
to fail to distinguish between; associate by mistake; confound:
to confuse dates; He always confuses the twins.
4.
to disconcert or abash:
His candor confused her.
5.
to combine without order; jumble; disorder:
Try not to confuse the papers on the desk.
6.
Archaic. to bring to ruin or naught.
/kənˈfjuːz/
verb (transitive)
1.
to bewilder; perplex
2.
to mix up (things, ideas, etc); jumble
3.
to make unclear: he confused his talk with irrelevant details
4.
to fail to recognize the difference between; mistake (one thing) for another
5.
to disconcert; embarrass
6.
to cause to become disordered: the enemy ranks were confused by gas
v.

1550s, in literal sense “mix or mingle things so as to render the elements indistinguishable;” attested from mid-18c. in active, figurative sense of “discomfit in mind or feeling;” not in general use until 19c., taking over senses formerly belonging to confound, dumbfound, flabbergast etc. The past participle confused (q.v.) is attested much earlier (serving as an alternative past tense to confound), and the verb here might be a back-formation from it. Related: Confusing.

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