The word "crumple" is used when something is pushed together and the original condition is changed for the worse. We use this word for paper and clothes. You can use "crumple" as a verb or as an adjective:

  • I crumpled a piece of paper and threw it into the wastepaper basket. (verb–past tense)
  • There are crumpled pieces of paper all around this computer. (adjective)

crumpled paper

  • The little boy pulled a few crumpled dollar bills out of his pocket to pay for the ice cream. (adjective)
  • Franks’s suit was wrinkled and crumpled after being in his suitcase for a couple of days. (adjective)
  • Sarah took off her scarf and left it in a crumpled heap beside the bed. (adjective)
  • The back end of the car was crumpled in the accident. (verb)
  • A crumple zone in the front of a car absorbs energy in an accident and can save passengers from life-threatening injuries. (adjective)

Click here to go to the Word of the Day page.

(This page was originally published on November 7, 2011.)