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kitsch

[kich]
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noun
  1. something of tawdry design, appearance, or content created to appeal to popular or undiscriminating taste.
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Origin of kitsch

1925–30; < German, derivative of kitschen to throw together (a work of art)
Related formskitsch·y, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for kitschy

gaudy, ostentatious, vulgar, showy, ornate, garish, splashy, brilliant, jazzy, flashy, snazzy, gross, gay, pizzazz, chichi, crude, tinsel, screaming, blatant, brassy

Examples from the Web for kitschy

Contemporary Examples of kitschy

Historical Examples of kitschy

  • That meant going as touristy as possible—something overpriced and kitschy.

    Makers

    Cory Doctorow


British Dictionary definitions for kitschy

kitsch

noun
    1. tawdry, vulgarized, or pretentious art, literature, etc, usually with popular or sentimental appeal
    2. (as modifier)a kitsch plaster bust of Beethoven
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Derived Formskitschy, adjective

Word Origin for kitsch

C20: from German
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 kitschy

adj.

1965, from kitsch + -y (2). Related: Kitchiness.

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kitsch

n.

1926, from German kitsch, literally "gaudy, trash," from dialectal kitschen "to smear."

What we English people call ugliness in German art is simply the furious reaction against what Germans call süsses Kitsch, the art of the picture postcard, and of what corresponds to the royalty ballad. It has for years been their constant reproach against us that England is the great country of Kitsch. Many years ago a German who loved England only too well said to me, 'I like your English word plain; it is a word for which we have no equivalent in German, because all German women are plain.' He might well have balanced it by saying that English has no equivalent for the word Kitsch. [Edward J. Dent, "The Music of Arnold Schönberg," "The Living Age," July 9, 1921]
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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

kitschy in Culture

kitsch

[(kich)]

Works of art and other objects (such as furniture) that are meant to look costly but actually are in poor taste.

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Note

Kitsch in literature and music is associated with sentimentalism as well as bad taste.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.