far·​ra·​go | \ fə-ˈrä-(ˌ)gō How to pronounce farrago (audio) , -ˈrā- How to pronounce farrago (audio) \
plural farragoes

Definition of farrago

: a confused mixture : hodgepodge

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Did You Know?

Farrago might seem an unlikely relative of "farina" (the mealy breakfast cereal), but the two terms have their roots in the same Latin noun. Both derive from "far," the Latin name for "spelt" (a type of grain). In Latin, farrago meant "mixed fodder" - cattle feed, that is. It was also used more generally to mean "mixture." When it was adopted into English in the early 1600s, "farrago" retained the "mixture" sense of its ancestor. Today, we often use it for a jumble or medley of disorganized, haphazard, or even nonsensical ideas or elements.

Examples of farrago in a Sentence

the shop is filled with a whimsical farrago of artwork, antiques, and vintage clothing
Recent Examples on the Web In the weeks after the November election, Dobbs had spent most of his prime-time hour on a farrago of conspiracy theories about how Donald Trump had actually defeated Joe Biden. New York Times, "Can Conservative Media Still Return to Business as Usual?," 13 Jan. 2021 After this farrago, what can Montalbano do but agree to foot the bill for the letter/litter, too? Dennis Drabelle, Washington Post, "Blind, Andrea Camilleri dictated this delightful mystery novel before his death at 93," 12 Sep. 2019 Said plot includes landslides, FBI agents, pharmaceutical mix-ups, family interventions, and journeys to the South Pole — a farrago of farce that never quite jells with the movie’s serious concerns. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, "Cate Blanchett makes a break for it in ‘Where’d You Go, Bernadette’," 15 Aug. 2019 True to form, Ms. Lipman blends a pair of highly appealing love stories into this farrago. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "Fiction: The Flavor of the American Century," 15 Feb. 2019 As Voltaire/Pangloss, Kevin Burdette made a brilliantly cynical cicerone through this farrago. Heidi Waleson, WSJ, "Staging Reimagined Stories in New Mexico," 6 Aug. 2018 The website that says it is associated with Operational Forces Action, A.F.O. in French, is a farrago of threats and vague ideology. Adam Nossiter, New York Times, "Shadowy Cell in France Plotted to Kill Muslim Civilians, Authorities Say," 28 June 2018 Indeed, the farrago signalled his strength as well as his weakness. The Economist, "A blot against America," 23 June 2018 Her childhood had been quietly calamitous, her father's career a farrago of alcoholism, shame, and secret homosexuality. Michael Chabon, GQ, "Michael Chabon: Are Kids the Enemy of Writing?," 27 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'farrago.' 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 farrago

1611, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for farrago

Latin farragin-, farrago mixed fodder, mixture, from far spelt — more at barley

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The first known use of farrago was in 1611

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Cite this Entry

“Farrago.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/farrago. Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for farrago

Britannica English: Translation of farrago for Arabic Speakers

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