blo·​vi·​ate ˈblō-vē-ˌāt How to pronounce bloviate (audio)
bloviated; bloviating

intransitive verb

: to speak or write verbosely and windily
pundits bloviating on the radio
bloviation noun

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What's the connection between Harding and bloviate?

Warren G. Harding is often linked to bloviate, but to him the word wasn't insulting; it simply meant "to spend time idly." Harding used the word often in that "hanging around" sense, but during his tenure as the 29th U.S. President (1921-23), he became associated with the "verbose" sense of bloviate, perhaps because his speeches tended to the long-winded side. Although he is sometimes credited with having coined the word, it's more likely that Harding picked it up from local slang while hanging around with his boyhood buddies in Ohio in the late 1800s. The term probably derives from a combination of the word blow plus the suffix -ate.

Examples of bloviate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Related: The Celtics found their stroke from 3, showed some fight, and kept their season alive The Celtics can bloviate about being more connected and having better commitment at the defensive end. Christopher L. Gasper,, 24 May 2023 In the play Prima Facie, Jodie Comer is alone on stage for the full length of the show’s 100 minutes, starting as a brash, bloviating barrister, then turning to a quieter, more vulnerable woman trying to find justice for herself in the very legal system that had previously propped her up. Caitlin Huston, The Hollywood Reporter, 13 May 2023 The alleged avatar, seemingly a middle-aged bald man sporting a salt-and-pepper beard, speaks in a dulcet, robotic monotone, bloviating through the seven-minute video. Cyrus Farivar, Forbes, 20 Apr. 2023 Actors jockey, directors bloviate, writers fume at liberties taken. Jesse Green, New York Times, 20 Apr. 2023 Director Rian Johnson winkingly hung a 1961 Mark Rothko abstraction upside down, as a nod to Bron’s bloviating ignorance. Jay Cheshes, Robb Report, 4 Mar. 2023 Unfortunately, rather than acknowledge reality and help plan not only for what's coming but also for what's already here, some politicians prefer to bloviate while exploiting misfortune for partisan gain. Tom Yulsman, Discover Magazine, 30 June 2017 And will Washington have the resources to hire someone who can actually compete with Oregon, not just bloviate about academic standards? Dan Wolken, USA TODAY, 15 Nov. 2021 Gentry is not the coach to hold hands, bloviate with stern lectures or meticulously guide a young team through the developmental process. Scott Kushner,, 12 Aug. 2020 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'bloviate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


perhaps irregular from blow entry 1

First Known Use

1845, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of bloviate was in 1845


Dictionary Entries Near bloviate

Cite this Entry

“Bloviate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Sep. 2023.

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