English

Definition of rummage verb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

 

rummage

 verb
verb
BrE BrE//ˈrʌmɪdʒ//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrʌmɪdʒ//
 
Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they rummage
BrE BrE//ˈrʌmɪdʒ//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrʌmɪdʒ//
 
he / she / it rummages
BrE BrE//ˈrʌmɪdʒɪz//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrʌmɪdʒɪz//
 
past simple rummaged
BrE BrE//ˈrʌmɪdʒd//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrʌmɪdʒd//
 
past participle rummaged
BrE BrE//ˈrʌmɪdʒd//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrʌmɪdʒd//
 
-ing form rummaging
BrE BrE//ˈrʌmɪdʒɪŋ//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrʌmɪdʒɪŋ//
 
 
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[intransitive] + adv./prep. to move things around carelessly while searching for something She was rummaging around in her bag for her keys. I rummaged through the contents of the box until I found the book I wanted. Word Origin late 15th cent.: from Old French arrumage, from arrumer ‘stow (in a hold)’, from Middle Dutch ruim ‘room’. In early use the word referred to the arranging of items such as casks in the hold of a ship, giving rise (early 17th cent.) to the verb sense ‘make a search of (a vessel)’.

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