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[blurb] /blɜrb/
a brief advertisement or announcement, especially a laudatory one:
She wrote a good blurb for her friend's novel.
verb (used with object)
to advertise or praise in the manner of a blurb.
Origin of blurb
An Americanism dating back to 1910-15; allegedly coined by F. G. Burgess
Related forms
blurbist, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for blurb
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It—it's just the sort of thing we call a 'blurb,' Miss West!


    Leona Dalrymple
  • Herman had the wild thought that they were blurb writers whose jobs had gone to their heads.

    Freudian Slip Franklin Abel
  • Front matter consisting of a blurb and a list of other publications by the author has been moved to the end of the text.

    Storm Over Warlock Andre Norton
  • Matson read that blurb in an official press release and laughed cynically.

    Assassin Jesse Franklin Bone
British Dictionary definitions for blurb


a promotional description, as found on the jackets of books
Word Origin
C20: coined by Gelett Burgess (1866–1951), US humorist and illustrator
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Contemporary definitions for blurb
noun's 21st Century Lexicon
Copyright © 2003-2014, LLC
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Word Origin and History for blurb

used by U.S. scholar Brander Matthews (1852-1929) in 1906 in "American Character;" popularized 1907 by U.S. humorist Frank Gelett Burgess (1866-1951). Originally mocking excessive praise printed on book jackets.

Gelett Burgess, whose recent little book, "Are You a Bromide?" has been referred to above, then entertained the guests with some characteristic flashes of Burgessian humor. Referring to the word "blurb" on the wrapper of his book he said: "To 'blurb' is to make a sound like a publisher. The blurb was invented by Frank A. Munsey when he wrote on the front of his magazine in red ink 'I consider this number of Munsey's the hottest pie that ever came out of my bakery.' ... A blurb is a check drawn on Fame, and it is seldom honored.["] ["Publishers' Weekly," May 18, 1907]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for blurb



A statement in praise of something or somebody; esp an encomious passage from a book or theater review, used as advertising

[1910+; said to have been coined by Gelett Burgess (1866–1951), US humorist and illustrator; also attributed to Brander Matthews (1852–1929), US scholar and critic]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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