- discarded animal and vegetable matter, as from a kitchen; refuse.
- any matter that is no longer wanted or needed; trash.
- anything that is contemptibly worthless, inferior, or vile: There's nothing but garbage on TV tonight.
- worthless talk; lies; foolishness.
- Slang. any unnecessary item added to something else, as for appearance only; garnish: I'll have an Old Fashioned, but without the garbage.
- useless artificial satellites or parts of rockets floating in space, as satellites that are no longer transmitting information or rocket boosters jettisoned in flight.
- Computers. meaningless or unwanted data: That program was not properly debugged and produced nothing but garbage.
Origin of garbage
SynonymsSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for garbage
“At worst, Eric picked up a garbage can, was told by police to put it down, and did,” his lawyer, Martin Stoler, insisted.Protesters Slimed This Good Samaritan Cop
December 16, 2014
Brabner talked about the “MTV people” coming to Cleveland to get pictures of Pekar emptying the garbage and going bowling.The Rustbelt Roars Back From the Dead
Joel Kotkin, Richey Piiparinen
December 7, 2014
The kid moved again, slowly across the parking lot to the garbage bin.
Then he took the chicken and walked over to his spot near the garbage and sat down to eat it.
He held the garbage close to his face, then put it back in the bin.
"Cleansing fires for that sort of garbage," he said finally.The Million-Dollar Suitcase
He drained the bottle; then hurled it into the garbage pail with a resounding crash.The Doorway
Evelyn E. Smith
A mound of garbage crowned with the dead body of a dog arrested us not.Falk
Describe the method used in his community in disposing of garbage.Boy Scouts Handbook
Boy Scouts of America
We then specified places at which garbage, etc., should be dumped.Policing the Plains
- worthless, useless, or unwanted matter
- Also called: rubbish discarded or waste matter; refuse
- computing invalid data
- informal nonsense
Word Origin and History for garbage
early 15c., "giblets of a fowl, waste parts of an animal," later confused with garble in its sense of "siftings, refuse." Perhaps some senses derive from Old French garbe "a bundle of sheaves, entrails," from Proto-Germanic *garba- (cf. Dutch garf, German garbe "sheaf"), from PIE *ghrebh- "a handful, a grasp." Sense of "refuse, filth" is first attested 1580s; used figuratively for "worthless stuff" from 1590s. Garbology "study of waste as a social science" is from 1976.