See more synonyms for gimcrack on
  1. showy but useless.

Origin of gimcrack

1325–75 for earlier sense; Middle English gib(e)crake; compare Middle English gibben to waver (< Old French giber to shake)

Synonyms for gimcrack

See more synonyms for on Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for gimcrack

doodad, novelty, trinket, souvenir, knickknack, curio, bauble, bagatelle

Examples from the Web for gimcrack

Historical Examples of gimcrack

British Dictionary definitions for gimcrack


  1. cheap; shoddy
  1. a cheap showy trifle or gadget
Derived Formsgimcrackery, noun

Word Origin for gimcrack

C18: changed from C14 gibecrake little ornament, of unknown 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 gimcrack

1610s, "showy person;" sense of "trifle" first recorded 1839; of uncertain origin, perhaps alteration of gibecrake, a kind of ornament on wooden furniture (mid-14c.), perhaps from Old French giber "to rattle, shake" + Middle English crak "sharp noise, crack." In 18c.-19c. it also meant "a person who has a turn for mechanical contrivances."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper