Definition of mumblety-peg in English:


(also mumbletypeg)


  • A game in which each player in turn throws a knife or pointed stick from a series of positions, continuing until it fails to stick in the ground.

    • ‘I also remember taking our scout knives to school and playing mumblety-peg at recess with other eight and nine year old boys.’
    • ‘Some of the sailors played mumblety-peg with their knives (or knives they'd taken from Batcha's kitchen - it angered him so) or played duck and drake with small ice-cold stones they could find beneath the snow.’
    • ‘For those who have never heard of it, you play mumblety-peg by balancing the tip of your jack-knife on your palm, or index finger, or other appendage, and then flipping it in such a way that it sticks in the ground.’
    • ‘Kids played hopscotch and mumblety-peg in the dirt and built campfires in the summer, but Christmas was her favorite holiday when they cut down the tree and roasted goose for dinner.’


Early 17th century: also in the form mumble the peg, from mumble in the late 16th-century sense bite as if with toothless gums from the requirement of the game that an unsuccessful player withdraw a peg from the ground using the mouth.