[ bab-uhl ]
/ ˈbæb əl /

verb (used without object), bab·bled, bab·bling.

verb (used with object), bab·bled, bab·bling.

to utter in an incoherent, foolish, or meaningless fashion.
to reveal foolishly or thoughtlessly: to babble a secret.


Origin of babble

First recorded in 1200–50; Middle English babelen; cognate with Old Norse babbla, Dutch babbelen, German pappelen

Related forms

out·bab·ble, verb (used with object), out·bab·bled, out·bab·bling.

Can be confused

babble bauble bubble Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for babble

British Dictionary definitions for babble


/ (ˈbæbəl) /


to utter (words, sounds, etc) in an incoherent or indistinct jumble
(intr) to talk foolishly, incessantly, or irrelevantly
(tr) to disclose (secrets, confidences, etc) carelessly or impulsively
(intr) (of streams, birds, etc) to make a low murmuring or bubbling sound


incoherent or foolish speech; chatter
a murmuring or bubbling sound

Derived Forms

babblement, nounbabbling, noun, adjective

Word Origin for babble

C13: compare Dutch babbelen, Swedish babbla, French babiller to prattle, Latin babulus fool; probably all of imitative origin
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