Definition of bemuse in US English:



[with object]usually as adjective bemused
  • Puzzle, confuse, or bewilder (someone)

    ‘her bemused expression’
    ‘she was accepted with bemused resignation by her parents as a hippie’
    • ‘He looked utterly bemused by the question, shook his head and smiled broadly.’
    • ‘When the first Icehotel in the world opened, some people were a little bemused by exactly what it was.’
    • ‘After the show I ask him what he thought of the proceedings, and he says he was bemused by most of the criticism.’
    • ‘Then, before my hungry and bemused family could answer, he turned and vanished into the swirl of tables.’
    • ‘In cities such as Prague, expatriates were glued to televisions in bars, bemused locals looking on.’
    • ‘He took the offered hand and shook it firmly, bemused by the looks Mrs. Davis was giving him.’
    • ‘You wondered for a moment who was most bemused by this monumental and possibly decisive swing of the pendulum.’
    • ‘It bemuses me that I need a face-to-face situation in order to be able to construct my own argument without feeling overwhelmed.’
    • ‘Shoppers in Swindon were bemused to see snorkellers in the town centre.’
    • ‘Passion, Sondheim's most operatic work, continues to baffle the ear and bemuse the mind.’
    • ‘Firefighters were bemused to wake up and find a large brown and white horse tethered by a rope to their station.’
    • ‘Players who bemuse the opposition are exciting but those who confuse themselves as well can be simply glorious.’
    • ‘As bemused commuters hurried by, small chanting groups poured out from the early morning bars.’
    • ‘I'm bemused by the continual croaking and moaning that goes on about budgets.’
    • ‘This movie is more of a camp festival of excesses, where tone and temperament are identified and altered to confuse and bemuse the audience.’
    • ‘Morris was contacted, and became increasingly bemused by the investigation.’
    • ‘He is a decent sort, bemused by the essential strangeness of life, with more questions than answers.’
    • ‘He is still bemused by the enigmatic arrival and departure of his illness.’
    • ‘He seems bemused by his new surroundings goats, geese, Shetland ponies and a variety of other animals.’
    • ‘I was bemused to hear two men in conversation while they were rummaging through shop bargains.’
    bewildered, confused, puzzled, perplexed, baffled, stumped, mystified, stupefied, nonplussed, muddled, befuddled, fuddled, dumbfounded, at sea, at a loss, at sixes and sevens, thrown, thrown off balance, taken aback, disoriented, disconcerted, discomposed, troubled, discomfited, unnerved, shaken, shaken up, dazed, stunned, astonished, astounded
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Mid 18th century: from be- (as an intensifier) + muse.