Definition of nonsense in US English:

nonsense

noun

  • 1Spoken or written words that have no meaning or make no sense.

    ‘he was talking absolute nonsense’
    • ‘People get very frustrated because they're trying to make sense out of nonsense.’
    • ‘So, I may be an idiot, or just plain stupid, but I'm going to go ahead and admit that all of this gas price nonsense makes absolutely no sense to me.’
    • ‘The interesting thing is that he wrote this nonsense in October 2001-months before New Jersey officials appointed him their Poet Laureate.’
    • ‘In 1951 if I had said I was going to the deli to pick up a sixpack of coke, people would have thought I was speaking nonsense; the words were foreign.’
    • ‘I think I am blabbering nonsense and I should stop.’
    • ‘Then he comes into this House, along with his colleagues, and talks a lot of drivel and absolute nonsense.’
    • ‘I try to write, and manage 60 words of unsatisfactory nonsense before I give up.’
    • ‘His biography is eminently sensible on a subject about which much high-flown transcendental nonsense has been written.’
    • ‘Like I said earlier, it's absolute nonsense but nonsense which has been crafted with care and boundless enthusiasm.’
    • ‘And perhaps the one or two readers who told me I was writing nonsense will remember as well?’
    • ‘It made sense at that moment, you know, to roar incoherent nonsense while standing on stage with one of my musical icons.’
    • ‘I re-read the essay tonight, and it still reads like nonsense (not a word I use lightly) to me.’
    • ‘I'll keep writing nonsense on their lined pages.’
    • ‘Yes, it's a splendid piece of nonsense she writes.’
    • ‘They are absolute nonsense and make no sense, at all.’
    • ‘But what possesses them to write such nonsense with a straight face is beyond me.’
    • ‘My wife thinks he's some kind of demi-god and I'm just the bloke in the study writing nonsense, you know.’
    • ‘But I did produce much nonsense and some actual words on stacks of punch cards.’
    • ‘Are there any other volunteers to write nonsense out there?’
    rubbish, balderdash, gibberish, claptrap, blarney, guff, blather, blether
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    1. 1.1as exclamation Used to show strong disagreement.
      ‘“Nonsense! No one can do that.”’
      • ‘The second man was indignant at hearing this: ‘What nonsense!’’
      • ‘As a stickler for law and order, I say: nonsense!’
      • ‘As for his assertion that they would have replaced poll tax with a local income tax if it was feasible - nonsense!’
    2. 1.2as modifier Denoting verse or other writing intended to be amusing by virtue of its absurd or whimsical language.
      ‘nonsense poetry’
      • ‘As a boy of 11, I loved the nonsense verse of Façade, which I used to read whilst listening to Peggy Ashcroft and Paul Scofield's recorded version.’
      • ‘During these years he wrote his greatest nonsense verse.’
      • ‘Ackroyd then traces the development of comic writing through the wit of John Donne to the nonsense books of Lewis Carroll.’
      • ‘It is more difficult to believe that two irreverent jokers who set out to write nonsense verses could have been inspired by the gods without knowing it.’
      • ‘Successful nonsense verse must respect the structure and syntax of a language.’
      • ‘It's a nonsense verse used by everyone from boy scouts to football hooligans.’
      • ‘Vocal tracks fare better, presenting skittish pop with goofy arrangements and nonsense lyrics.’
      • ‘There were innumerable short parodies of Shakespeare's work, and Carroll's nonsense verse is often parodic.’
      • ‘Based on the life and nonsense poems of Edward Lear, the show was nominated for a Total Theatre Award and widely praised by the critics.’
      • ‘These two cuts are highlights from the album for me, especially ‘I Love You So’ with its nonsense lyrics.’
      • ‘Trash might be collectible, nonsense lyrics might be profound.’
      • ‘The Dada-influenced Suite for Chamber Orchestra, composed two years before the concerto, begins with a short nonsense poem, in true Dada style.’
      • ‘But before you get it all wrong, it's the world of nonsense poetry that the people at Akshara are talking about.’
      • ‘Her stories, told in nonsense verse, are fast-paced with a rhythm that carries through its pages.’
      • ‘The nonsense lyrics are either the ramblings of a burnt out fool or transcendent works of genius.’
      • ‘In fact, several of my favourite nonsense poems are by Lewis Carroll.’
      • ‘It is not addressed to anyone, is not in the Knave's handwriting, and is actually a set of nonsense verses.’
      • ‘I got a text message on my cell phone today with nonsense poetry from an unknown source.’
      • ‘But there are also disadvantages, including the nonsense sentences made from just these six letters.’
      • ‘Every language had its stock of lullabies, nursery rhymes, nonsense verses, fairytales and simple stories.’
  • 2Foolish or unacceptable behavior.

    ‘put a stop to that nonsense, will you?’
    • ‘My vote of no confidence is also aimed at each and every councillor who is not man enough to stand up and stop this nonsense.’
    • ‘The players under Shutt know he will stand no nonsense.’
    • ‘Let us hope that the good people of Virginia put a stop to this nonsense.’
    • ‘We appeal to those offenders to please stop this silly nonsense, as this is not a nice thing to do.’
    • ‘Our bill would have stopped that nonsense as well.’
    • ‘This patient won't stand for any nonsense - but she does require instant gratification’
    • ‘Now when Greta occasionally forgets her manners, the owner can stop this nonsense by standing in her kitchen doorway with the can in her hands so that Greta can see it.’
    • ‘Once again we appeal to these unsavoury people to please stop this silly nonsense.’
    • ‘To have those rights overridden by such ridiculous nonsense and sheer arrogance is unacceptable.’
    • ‘It is long past time to stop the partisan nonsense.’
    • ‘I believed that his romanticisms were foolish nonsense and were to be looked down upon.’
    • ‘Referee Peter McCarthy refused to stand for any nonsense and brandished a succession of cards.’
    • ‘I appeal to all concern to stop this silly nonsense before someone is seriously hurt.’
    • ‘Two outbreaks of such arrogant nonsense occurred recently.’
    • ‘Frankly, I am not going to stand any of your nonsense; and when you drop it I shall not expect you to stand any of mine.’
    • ‘Stop this nonsense at once, or you'll go to bed with no supper.’
    • ‘‘Guys can you stop all this nonsense for just few minutes,’ Kaoru said and stood in-between them.’
    • ‘Ok, so American justice isn't always perfect, but this nonsense sure doesn't help.’
    • ‘But, if the people of Washington, D.C., will stand up as citizens and exert their druthers, this nonsense would stop.’
    • ‘Finally, it is time to stop this fantastic nonsense and get down to real hard work.’
    mischief, mischievousness, naughtiness, badness
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Pronunciation