Etymology: probably akin to Low German gumpen to jump
a. to spring into the air ; leap; especially to spring free from the ground or other base by the muscular action of feet and legs
b. to move suddenly or involuntarily ; start
c. to move over a position occupied by an opponent's piece in a board game often thereby capturing the piece
d. to undergo a vertical or lateral displacement owing to improper alignment of the film on a projector mechanism
e. to start out or forward ; begin — usually used with off <jump off to a big lead> f. to move energetically ; hustle g. to go from one sequence of instructions in a computer program to another <jump to a subroutine> 2. coincide, agree 3. a. to move haphazardly or irregularly ; shift abruptly <jumped from job to job> b. to change or abandon employment especially in violation of contract c. to rise suddenly in rank or status d. to undergo a sudden sharp change in value <prices jumped> e. to make a jump in bridge f. to make a hurried judgment <jump to conclusions> g. to show eagerness <jumped at the chance> h. to enter eagerly <jump on the bandwagon> 4. to make a sudden physical or verbal attack <jumped on him for his criticism> 5. to bustle with activity <the bar was jumping with young people> transitive verb 1. a. to leap over <jump a hurdle> b. to move over (a piece) in a board game c. to act, move, or begin before (as a signal) <jump the green light> d. to leap aboard <jump a freight> 2. obsolete risk, hazard 3. a. to escape from ; avoid b. to leave hastily or in violation of contract <jump town without paying their bills — Hamilton Basso> c. to depart from (a normal course) <jump the track> 4. a. to make a sudden physical or verbal attack on b. to occupy illegally <jump a mining claim> 5. a. (1) to cause to leap (2) to cause (game) to break cover ; start, flush b. to elevate in rank or status c. to raise (a bridge partner's bid) by more than one rank d. to increase suddenly and sharply II. adverb Date: 1539 obsolete exactly, pat III. noun Date: circa 1552 1. a. (1) an act of jumping ; leap (2) any of several sports competitions featuring a leap, spring, or bound (3) a leap in figure skating in which the skater leaves the ice with both feet and turns in the air (4) a space cleared or covered by a leap (5) an obstacle to be jumped over or from b. a sudden involuntary movement ; start c. a move made in a board game by jumping d. a transfer from one sequence of instructions in a computer program to a different sequence <conditional jump> 2. obsolete venture 3. a. (1) a sharp sudden increase (2) a bid in bridge of more tricks than are necessary to overcall the preceding bid — compare shift b. an abrupt change or transition c. (1) a quick short journey (2) one in a series of moves from one place to another d. the portion of a published item (as a newspaper article or story) that comprises the continuation of an item that begins on a preceding page 4. an advantage at the start <desirous of getting the jump on the competition — Elmer Davis> 5. jazz music with a fast tempo
New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.