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.


Nearby words

  1. babbitt,
  2. babbitt metal,
  3. babbitt, irving,
  4. babbitt, milton,
  5. babbittry,
  6. babbler,
  7. babbling,
  8. babbling brook,
  9. babblingly,
  10. babcock test

Origin of babble

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

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

Can be confusedbabble 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



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 Formsbabblement, 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

Word Origin and History for babble
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper