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[gil-bur-tee-uh n]
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  1. of, relating to, or characteristic of the style or humor of Sir William S. Gilbert.

Origin of Gilbertian

First recorded in 1875–80; Gilbert + -ian
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for gilbertian

Historical Examples

  • When he made "Society" rhyme with "Propriety," he thought he was getting to be Gilbertian.

    Ade's Fables

    George Ade

  • There was something so "Gilbertian" in the idea of a prisoner acting as his own jailer!

  • The question of toasts, too, and the light in which the university held them, was Gilbertian.

    Rowlandson's Oxford

    A. Hamilton Gibbs

  • The whole position was Gilbertian beyond the wildest dreams of that genius.

  • These complications were getting exceedingly Gilbertian in character.

British Dictionary definitions for gilbertian


  1. characteristic of or resembling the style or whimsical humour of W. S. Gilbert
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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