gew·​gaw | \ˈg(y)ü-(ˌ)gȯ \
variants: or less commonly \ ˈjē-​(ˌ)gȯ , ˈgē-​ \

Definition of gewgaw 

: a showy trifle : bauble, trinket

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Examples of gewgaw in a Sentence

had a shelf devoted just to gewgaws featuring his favorite team's mascot

Recent Examples on the Web

Bookstores should be designed to bring us closer together, not modeled after an open prairie dotted with books and assorted gewgaws — puzzles, Lego kits, Polaroid cameras. John Warner,, "How to save Barnes & Noble? Take a page from the indie bookstores it nearly killed," 6 June 2018 Gary Oldman, Frances McDormand, Sam Rockwell and Allison Janney have all won Golden Globes, Screen Actors Guild Awards and countless other prizes and gewgaws in the weeks leading up to the Oscars. Glenn Whipp,, "The Oscar acting races are locked ... probably," 20 Feb. 2018 If ever one needed proof that the real charm of jewellery has little to do with its material worth, one need only to listen to the Hoppen girls talking gems and gewgaws with their grandmother, the ever-glamorous Stephanie Hoppen. A-LIST, "Family Jewels," 24 Dec. 2017 This gallery is no gewgaw emporium for hapless tourists but a handsomely shabby place with oriental rugs and a radio playing the Trout Quintet. Ben Ryder Howe, Town & Country, "The Surprising Truth About Fake Art and How to Avoid Being Scammed," 25 Sep. 2017 What really moves the customers are electronic gewgaws that promise to make driving effortless and safer. Kevin A. Wilson, Car and Driver, "2017 Jaguar XF 20d Diesel AWD," 11 July 2017 The spinner looks like a simple plastic gewgaw, but hidden within its body is a bearing around which the mechanism rotates. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, "The Fidget Spinner Explains the World," 12 May 2017 In its place: an infinite supply of gewgaws, whether apps or memes or tops. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, "The Fidget Spinner Explains the World," 12 May 2017 The industry might well have remained a relic but for one thing: There's gold in those gewgaws. Warren Berger, WIRED, "Schwag Bag," 1 Jan. 2001

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

circa 1529, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for gewgaw

origin unknown

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Time Traveler for gewgaw

The first known use of gewgaw was circa 1529

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More Definitions for gewgaw



English Language Learners Definition of gewgaw

: a small thing that has little value

More from Merriam-Webster on gewgaw

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Comments on gewgaw

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


by force of circumstances

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