Definition of gabble in English:



[no object]
  • Talk rapidly and unintelligibly.

    ‘he gabbled on in a panicky way until he was dismissed’
    • ‘They started gabbling in some foreign eastern European tongue and shot me intermittent daggers from their steely blue eyes.’
    • ‘The crazy, steaming city swirled and blared around me, the strange language honked and gabbled.’
    • ‘Then the chancellor raced to the podium and started talking, or rather gabbling.’
    • ‘We shivered in a red sunset, listening to the cranes gabbling in their maize-field feeding grounds.’
    • ‘‘Now it's hugely more exciting than the days of cardboard,’ he gabbled.’
    • ‘‘Hello, Ty,’ she says, the bucket gently sloshing, the solid air rent by the blast of the speakers, the crowd gabbling, her unflinching eyes locked on mine.’
    • ‘The only way to memorise a book is to say it out loud to yourself, and this I did, gabbling away as children do, my real purpose concealed because nobody ever listens to what a child has to say.’
    • ‘‘I love Christmas and not just because it makes me money,’ he gabbles.’
    • ‘For the truth of things, and the profit thereof, are found rather among a few folk who are wise and reasonable than among the multitude, where every man cries and gabbles as he likes.’
    • ‘People had been gabbling at her in some strange language that sounded like a cross between Russian and Gaelic, but slightly more confusing.’
    • ‘One evening, during dinner, a boy ran into our kitchen, gabbling breathlessly that a tiger had entered the cowshed and killed a goat.’
    • ‘Around them bustles Ceicao, an ancient village woman, who cackles and gabbles as she throws sticks and pokes the ashes of the fire, raising cinders like showers of fireworks.’
    • ‘He gabbles to everyone in earshot about the lesson, how well it went, what the students said and did, and so on.’
    • ‘With a track record like this, one might have expected the man in question to be a hustler, all gold bracelets and wide ties, talking percentages and gabbling conspiratorially into a mobile phone.’
    • ‘Five boys started gabbling at him at the same time, all trying to convince him that they were blameless with different varieties of the same excuse.’
    • ‘‘Not a problem,’ he gabbles, so rattled he's not noticed that the important fields are filled out in pencil.’
    • ‘Her gentle smile melted across her face like warm water washing against bare flesh and she laughed out loud, gabbling about how he shouldn't have gone to so much trouble.’
    • ‘The fact that we stopped gabbling for 15 minutes says it all, and in the intervening week I've been tempted to hop in my car and drive for an hour and a half just to check that my tastebuds weren't deceiving me.’
    • ‘Tracy snatched at the paper at my hands, gabbling that she wanted to see it.’
    • ‘We spent many early evenings down at the swimming pool, paddling when the water was not deep enough for total immersion, listening to the baboons shrieking and gabbling from a nearby hill.’
    jabber, babble, prattle, rattle, blabber, gibber, cackle, blab, drivel, twitter, splutter
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mass noun
  • Rapid unintelligible talk.

    ‘she wasn't very good at the random gabble of teenagers’
    • ‘There was a furious gabble of ‘right away milady!’’
    • ‘I've learned his gabble is usually honey talk but occasionally it can be coercion.’
    • ‘It always frustrates me when Ministers come down to the House and gabble through a speech written by someone else when they introduce a bill, and clearly do not have the faintest notion what the bill is doing or what it is about.’
    • ‘Every single person in the auditorium broke into a confused gabble.’
    • ‘Their gabble clouded my mind and it was difficult to concentrate on my work.’
    • ‘There was some tired bureaucratic gabble - ‘An in-depth process that includes accountability will provide progress.’’
    • ‘Their excited gabble came so fast I was swamped, unable to follow them.’
    • ‘If he's on the tube we can just mute the gabble and marvel at his wonderful face instead.’
    • ‘It was an absolute bullet-like, repetitive gabble.’
    • ‘Hens and roosters, showing off their gilded feathers, gabble under my window,’
    • ‘It doesn't turn anthropology or the story of human evolution on its head, a piece of science-correspondent gabble I think I heard during my goggle-eyed, gobsmacked, yelping look at yesterday evening's TV news.’
    • ‘The cubs who knew me were effusive in their greetings, their claws catching at my clothing as they closed around me, a gabble of voices.’
    • ‘English - stretched and pummelled by a tireless gabble of journos, admen, rappers, surfers, druggies, cops, criminals, geeks and gurus - carries on growing and dominating the global tongue.’
    • ‘Otherwise what are you going to do with the magic, just treat it like a little parlour game for the rest of your life and gabble about it on the net afterwards?’
    • ‘Instead, peddling excuses as earlier clerics quoted psalms, he goes on a gabble about her ‘dignity’ - did the dead dog have a pedigree, do you think?’
    • ‘Another personality was Harry Hemsley, who had a little boy who spoke in an unintelligible gabble, but was understood perfectly well by his elder sister.’
    jabbering, babbling, chattering, gibbering, babble, chatter, rambling
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Late 16th century: from Dutch gabbelen, of imitative origin.