[gab-uh l]

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

to speak or converse rapidly and unintelligibly; jabber.
(of hens, geese, etc.) to cackle.

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

to utter rapidly and unintelligibly.


rapid, unintelligible talk.
any quick succession of meaningless sounds.

Origin of gabble

1570–80; perhaps < Middle Dutch gabbelen, or expressive formation in English; cf. gab1, gob4, -le
Related formsgab·bler, nounout·gab·ble, verb (used with object), out·gab·bled, out·gab·bling. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for gabble

Historical Examples of gabble

  • And all the time the gabble of the women mocked at the silence of death.

    Things as They Are

    Amy Wilson-Carmichael

  • While I cannot but be grateful to Mrs. Gabble for her kindness, I wish it had taken some other shape.

  • Mrs. Gabble, it is not a question of harm, but of obedience, here.

  • “Oh, I would not take that gabble of a priest seriously if I were you,” he suggested.

    The Treasure Trail

    Marah Ellis Ryan

  • And the rest o' the tune it was all gabble, gabble by the brothers and sisters about you.

British Dictionary definitions for gabble



to utter (words, etc) rapidly and indistinctly; jabber
(intr) (of geese and some other birds or animals) to utter rapid cackling noises


rapid and indistinct speech or noises
Derived Formsgabbler, noun

Word Origin for gabble

C17: from Middle Dutch gabbelen, 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 gabble

1570s, frequentative of gab (q.v.), or else imitative. Related: Gabbled; gabbling.


c.1600, from gabble (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper