brou·​ha·​ha | \ ˈbrü-ˌhä-ˌhä How to pronounce brouhaha (audio) , ˌbrü-ˌhä-ˈhä, brü-ˈhä-ˌhä\

Definition of brouhaha

: hubbub, uproar A brouhaha erupted over her statements.

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There is a bit of a brouhaha over the etymology of brouhaha. Some etymologists think the word is onomatopoeic in origin, but others believe it comes from the Hebrew phrase bārŪkh habbā’, meaning "blessed be he who enters" (Psalms 118:26). Although we borrowed our spelling and meaning of brouhaha directly from French in the late 19th century, etymologists have connected the French derivation to that frequently recited Hebrew phrase, distorted to something like brouhaha by worshippers whose knowledge of Hebrew was limited. Thus, once out of the synagogue, the word first meant "a noisy confusion of sound" - a sense that was later extended to refer to any tumultuous and confused situation.

Examples of brouhaha in a Sentence

A brouhaha erupted over her statements about the president. There's been a lot of brouhaha about her statements.

Recent Examples on the Web

The brouhaha began when the proud new dad posted a picture of himself taking little Ben on a private plane, wearing the baby in a carrier. Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, "Andy Cohen Was Just Dad-Shamed for Taking His Newborn on an Airplane," 12 Feb. 2019 The controversial piece immediately set off a brouhaha from Trump and other White House officials. Kaitlyn Schallhorn, Fox News, "New York Times op-ed sparks denials from Trump staff: A list of officials claiming they're not the author," 7 Sep. 2018 As a result of the brouhaha, the April 2019 trial date has been cancelled and, for now, has not been rescheduled. Cyrus Farivar, Ars Technica, "Facebook also let dating apps have further access to Graph API back in 2015," 5 Dec. 2018 But the overall emphasis is this, that Rosenstein, Mueller, the Brett Kavanaugh brouhaha, that this is all bad for the Republicans. Fox News, "Daines slams Dems' 'desperation tactics' against Kavanaugh," 24 Sep. 2018 The average person doesn't care about the privacy brouhaha and despite high profile celebrities like Cher and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak calling to delete Facebook, most won't. Jefferson Graham, USA TODAY, "Facebook's Zuckerberg got grilled, but nothing's really changed," 14 Apr. 2018 But flexibility rarely comes up, as Brand points out in his book, in the fevered brouhaha of building and architectural consumption. Kate Wagner, Curbed, "Building houses that grow with us," 14 Nov. 2018 The ensuing brouhaha caused Sichel and Schwarzman to abandon the school renaming and led the superintendent to write a letter of apology over how the matter was handled. Kathy Boccella,, "Abington superintendent to retire after Stephen Schwarzman donation debacle," 9 July 2018 There is a lot of brouhaha that comes with living one’s private life publicly. Elizabeth Wellington,, "Let's pray that Ben Simmons and Kendall Jenner don't make it through the summer | Elizabeth Wellington," 1 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'brouhaha.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of brouhaha

1890, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for brouhaha


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Time Traveler for brouhaha

The first known use of brouhaha was in 1890

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English Language Learners Definition of brouhaha

informal + usually disapproving : great excitement or concern about something

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Comments on brouhaha

What made you want to look up brouhaha? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a strong desire or propensity

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