pabulum

[pab-yuh-luh m]

noun

something that nourishes an animal or vegetable organism; food; nutriment.
material for intellectual nourishment.

Nearby words

  1. paasikivi, juho kusti,
  2. paba,
  3. pablo,
  4. pablum,
  5. pabst,
  6. pabx,
  7. pac,
  8. pac-man defense,
  9. pac.,
  10. paca

Origin of pabulum

1670–80; < Latin pābulum food, nourishment, equivalent to pā(scere) to feed (akin to food) + -bulum noun suffix of instrument

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pabulum


British Dictionary definitions for pabulum

pabulum

noun rare

food
food for thought, esp when bland or dull

Word Origin for pabulum

C17: from Latin, from pascere to feed

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 pabulum

pabulum

n.

"food" for anything, 1670s, from Latin pabulum "fodder, food, nourishment," from PIE root *pa- "to protect, feed" (see food) + instrumentive suffix *-dhlom.

Pablum (1932), derived from this, is a trademark (Mead Johnson & Co.) for a soft, bland cereal used as a food for infants and weak and invalid people, hence figurative use (attested from 1970, first by U.S. Vice President Spiro Agnew) in reference to "mushy" political prose.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper