bush telegraph

  1. any system of communication in which the natives of a jungle or bush region transmit news rapidly, as by runners, drum codes, or smoke signals.

  2. Australian.

    • any chain of communications by which criminals, originally bushrangers, are warned of police movements.

    • Slang. rumor; the grapevine.

Origin of bush telegraph

First recorded in 1875–80

Words Nearby bush telegraph

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use bush telegraph in a sentence

  • A bush telegraph, you see, is mostly worked about the neighbourhood he was born in.

    Robbery Under Arms | Thomas Alexander Browne, AKA Rolf Boldrewood

British Dictionary definitions for bush telegraph

bush telegraph

  1. a means of communication between primitive peoples over large areas, as by drum beats

  2. a means of spreading rumour, gossip, etc

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