• synonyms


[jib-er, gib-]
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verb (used without object)
  1. to speak inarticulately or meaninglessly.
  2. to speak foolishly; chatter.
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  1. gibbering utterance.
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Origin of gibber

1595–1605; origin uncertain; perhaps frequentative of gib (obsolete) to caterwaul (see gib2); sense and pronunciation influenced by association with jabber
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

blather, prate, mumble, cackle, patter, blurt, jabber, gossip, burble, mutter, gabble, rant, chat, gush, murmur, blubber, rave, prattle, blab, chatter

Examples from the Web for gibbering

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • It is then that you will get the gibbering of returning life.

    Journeys to Bagdad

    Charles S. Brooks

  • She lay listening to a quivering, gibbering tune that she did not know.


    John Galsworthy

  • "You be a brave Buckra," said she, in her gibbering English.

  • Shake up, you gibbering fools; luff her a bit and make fast.

    The Iron Pirate

    Max Pemberton

  • Our society is becoming a veritable babel of gibbering crowds.

    The Behavior of Crowds

    Everett Dean Martin

British Dictionary definitions for gibbering


  1. to utter rapidly and unintelligibly; prattle
  2. (intr) (of monkeys and related animals) to make characteristic chattering sounds
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  1. a less common word for gibberish
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Word Origin

C17: of imitative origin


noun Australian
  1. a stone or boulder
  2. (modifier) of or relating to a dry flat area of land covered with wind-polished stonesgibber plains
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Word Origin

C19: from a native Australian language
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 gibbering



c.1600, probably a back-formation from gibberish. Related: Gibbered; gibbering.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper