Definition of gossip in English:



  • 1Casual or unconstrained conversation or reports about other people, typically involving details that are not confirmed as being true.

    ‘he became the subject of much local gossip’
    • ‘After that incident, I immediately wrote an article to discuss the issue and asked the media not to report too much gossip.’
    • ‘Those in tune with local film gossip have been waiting for Hussain's vision to hit the big screen for a long time.’
    • ‘His survival depends on audiences who will not accept fact-free reporting and who recognize gossip packaged in legalese.’
    • ‘Consequently, we kept our daily reports clear of any gossip or personal information.’
    • ‘Once the local gossip was out of the way, she took to her usual habit of saying, ‘So what's new?’’
    • ‘Perhaps the most remarkable comment made by the source was when he referred to what he said was a popular theory in the current round of local gossip.’
    • ‘While it is true that set gossip is often exaggerated, it's amazing how often stories turn out to be completely true.’
    • ‘It's a fast read with lots of insider details and gossip.’
    • ‘Adam was talking to the owner of the apartment block once we'd moved in, and found out some of the local gossip about the residents.’
    • ‘One might think that they were there for an arisan (monthly social gathering) to catch up with the local gossip.’
    • ‘The population is skewed toward the seriously rich, with billionaires, according to the local gossip, having driven out the millionaires.’
    • ‘It all became as terrible as completely true gossip would be.’
    • ‘Yes, but I must add it is mostly local gossip, the trial has yet to take place.’
    • ‘The love triangle became the subject of local gossip and he was shattered.’
    • ‘Friendly newsagent Lynda, who is a runner in her spare time, keeps me up to date on the local athletics gossip.’
    • ‘It's still uncertain if the damaging gossip is true, but if it were, I would only respect Sharon that much more!’
    • ‘It was the place you'd go to hear the local gossip, have a quiet pint, watch a game on TV, or read the paper.’
    • ‘Hopefully I will find easy wireless access and have some fun gossip to report.’
    • ‘The pilgrim was a good man, and innocent in his way, and sitting down to rest in the market square, he listened to the local gossip.’
    • ‘However, members of the public reading the caption would think it was true and that the gossip he reported was accurate.’
    chat, talk, conversation, chatter, heart-to-heart, tête-à-tête, powwow, blether, blather
    tittle-tattle, tattle, rumour, rumours, whispers, stories, tales, canards, titbits
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    1. 1.1derogatory A person who likes talking about other people's private lives.
      • ‘Under Wareham's instruction, they walked down the lane to the home of the local gossip, Mrs. Haggerton.’
      • ‘The dichotomy that exists between reticent and proper small town papers and ruthlessly efficient small town gossips fascinates me.’
      • ‘A list of six names was compiled by the gossips and rumour-mongers of Belgravia, among them key figures from high society - aristocracy, government ministers and film stars.’
      • ‘And my respect is never earned by idle-minded gossips, no matter how ancient they might be.’
      • ‘Market gossips suggest there are up to half a dozen firms casting a serious eye over Rank.’
      • ‘This latest buzz on their crumbling relationship is only their press people conceding that the gossips have been right all along!’
      • ‘Because friends don't let friends get tagged as vicious gossips.’
      • ‘We've got replica handcuffs, manacles, thumb screws, a branding iron and even a scold's bridle, a metal head cage often used to punish and humiliate gossips to stop them from talking!’
      • ‘Also, I am totally intolerant of gossips and most annoying people.’
      • ‘There was more to titillate gossips; Queen Victoria instructed those servants so entrusted to place a lock of John Brown's hair and his photograph in her coffin at her death in 1901.’
      • ‘The government encourages village snoops and urban gossips to volunteer their infinite time and darkest thoughts as a way of keeping the rest of us in line.’
      • ‘He was, incongruously, an incurable gossip, careful to label rumour for what it was, but fascinated by it…’
      • ‘E. used to have the best job a gossip could hope for - telephone operator in a small town in the days of party lines.’
      • ‘Mean spirited gossips painted C.C. as a cold-blooded murderer but his dead brother would have been a more likely choice for that role.’
      • ‘Like so much of what's been reported about Lorna Moon, it was largely codswallop, the tittle-tattle of small town gossips.’
      • ‘The first gossips were Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.’
      • ‘He was a horrible gossip, and his tales shifted from fact to fancy in the space of a minute.’
      • ‘But when it comes to protecting our peace and quiet, we Beggarsdalians make the Sicilians sound like a bunch of loud-mouthed gossips.’
      • ‘He is one part charming, electric, shrewd, an engrossing teller of stories, a gossip - and one part beast.’
      • ‘Oh, that poor woman, victim of small town gossips!’
      scandalmonger, gossipmonger, tattler, tittle-tattler, busybody, muckraker
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  • Engage in gossip.

    ‘they would start gossiping about her as soon as she left’
    • ‘Taking a seat in a corner booth, we order a bottle of wine and begin gossiping away merrily.’
    • ‘What people once gossiped about, they now pass over in silence.’
    • ‘She jokes and gossips about some of his parliamentary colleagues, and though he doesn't join in, he does chuckle.’
    • ‘Today, I spent a long time at the hairdressers, gossiping with the staff and having my hair coloured and snipped and fiddled with.’
    • ‘I have not gossiped, lost my temper, been greedy, nasty, selfish, or self-indulgent.’
    • ‘He probably would have gossiped with Marcia, and tried to chat up David.’
    • ‘They gossiped, bickered, laughed and fought - just as children do every day.’
    • ‘Some read, some gossiped, some just stared at the ads.’
    • ‘They worried about love, marriage and work, fussed about their children, gossiped and plotted.’
    • ‘We laughed and drank more wine and gossiped about old colleagues, including one women who fell in love with a Cuban while holidaying in Havana.’
    • ‘We gossiped for a while and when the music stopped, went to our room.’
    • ‘We were also gossiping about people from school when Bella's cell phone rang.’
    • ‘Not just because she swears a lot, holds strident political views or gossips freely about the pomposity of certain Scottish theatre critics.’
    • ‘The girls all gossiped and chatted, laughing really hard when Noah came to the door, and leaned on the frame.’
    • ‘After the show we all sat in the bar and chatted and gossiped.’
    • ‘On the way home on the train, my brother read a racing form, my sister-in-law and I gossiped, and we were all grateful we didn't have to move.’
    • ‘Her sister Lee offered her support and then gossiped about her to Truman Capote and Cecil Beaton.’
    • ‘Have you gossiped about one of those lunch girls behind her back?’
    • ‘Who ever thought I'd wish people gossiped about me more?’
    • ‘They would have no one to cook for them, no one to clean, and no one to drive the buggy about town while they chatted and gossiped with their friends.’
    spread rumours, spread gossip, circulate rumours, spread stories, tittle-tattle, tattle, talk, whisper, tell tales, muckrake
    chat, talk, converse, speak to each other, discuss things, have a talk, have a chat, have a tête-à-tête, have a conversation, engage in conversation
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Late Old English godsibb, ‘godfather, godmother, baptismal sponsor’, literally ‘a person related to one in God’, from god ‘God’ + sibb ‘a relative’ (see sib). In Middle English the sense was ‘a close friend, a person with whom one gossips’, hence ‘a person who gossips’, later (early 19th century) ‘idle talk’ (from the verb, which dates from the early 17th century).