or gob·ble·dy·gook

[ gob-uhl-dee-gook ]
/ ˈgɒb əl diˌgʊk /


language characterized by circumlocution and jargon, usually hard to understand: the gobbledegook of government reports.

Origin of gobbledegook

First recorded in 1940–45; fanciful formation from gobble2
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British Dictionary definitions for gobbledygook



/ (ˈɡɒbəldɪˌɡuːk) /


pretentious or unintelligible jargon, such as that used by officials

Word Origin for gobbledegook

C20: whimsical formation from gobble ²
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 gobbledygook



also gobbledegook, "the overinvolved, pompous talk of officialdom" [Klein], 1944, American English, first used by U.S. Rep. Maury Maverick, D.-Texas, (1895-1954), a grandson of the original maverick and chairman of U.S. Smaller War Plants Corporation during World War II. First used in a memo dated March 30, 1944, banning "gobbledygook language" and mock-threateaning, "anyone using the words activation or implementation will be shot." Maverick said he made up the word in imitation of turkey noise. Another word for it, coined about the same time, was bafflegab (1952).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper