\ˈglib \
glibber; glibbest

Definition of glib 

1a : marked by ease and informality : nonchalant

b : showing little forethought or preparation : offhand glib answers

c : lacking depth and substance : superficial glib solutions to knotty problems

2 archaic : smooth, slippery

3 : marked by ease and fluency in speaking or writing often to the point of being insincere or deceitful a glib politician

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from glib

glibly adverb
glibness noun

Examples of glib in a Sentence

Or they could have saddled us with "The Stranger," which had the mitigating charm of being glib and pretentious and would thus have kept the kids who were obviously going to end up at Bard happy. — Joe Queenan, New York Times Book Review, 3 June 2007 The problem was that the candidate anticipated all the questions, knew all the answers and tended to pop out the reply the moment the question was asked; it made him seem like a smart aleck, too glib. — William Safire, New York Times Magazine, 16 June 1991 Some of the glibbest persons in the nation are oddly tongue-tied when the Bible is brought up. — Garry Wills, Under God, 1990 I expected a glib ladies' man, which he's not. He is an introspective man with deep emotions. — Loni Anderson, quoted in People Weekly, 6 Nov. 1989 Politicians need to do more than provide glib answers to difficult questions. the actor's glib portrayal of a drug addict
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

Even on the merits of the trade argument alone, Trump's decision seems glib. Adam Taylor, Washington Post, "How Trump’s ZTE deal could undercut his foreign policy," 16 May 2018 The satire of bourgeois affluence can seem glib and overextended. Ben Brantley, New York Times, "Review: ‘Is God Is’ Reinvents the Good, the Bad and the Ugly," 18 Feb. 2018 Macdonald has bombshell news here about child abuse allegedly suffered by Whitney and at least one brother, and Whitney is bit glib in holding up this news as an explains-it-all answer to her myriad problems. Gary Thompson,, "'Whitney': A moving, revealing look at the life of Whitney Houston," 4 July 2018 The league enjoyed a free ride on glib patriotic display for more than 60 years, and now the bill is coming due. Charles P. Pierce,, "Trump Has Made the NFL His Punching Bag. The League’s Best Response Is Defiance," 9 July 2018 The show itself drew scrutiny for plot points and punch lines, especially with its third episode, which featured a glib exchange between Roseanne and her husband. John Koblin, New York Times, "ABC Plans a ‘Roseanne’ Spinoff, Without Roseanne Barr," 21 June 2018 Of course, the criticisms of this blanket condemnation of men — from transnational feminists who decry such glib universalism to U.S. women of color who demand an intersectional perspective — are mostly on the mark. Andrew Sullivan, Daily Intelligencer, "Trump Is Making Us All Live in His Delusional Reality Show," 15 June 2018 That led to last summer’s book Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly (Bloomsbury, $24.95), a wildly hilarious, raw and glib, two-fistedly unsentimental autobiography. Michael Klein,, "Anthony Bourdain: He didn't set out to be a celebrity," 8 June 2018 Ruscha’s words came across as hilarious, delphic, glib, blankly transcribed from everyday speech. Mark Rozzo, Vanities, "Ed Ruscha Still Has Plenty More to Say About America," 30 May 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of glib

1584, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for glib

probably modification of Low German glibberig slippery

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about glib

Dictionary Entries near glib








Statistics for glib

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for glib

The first known use of glib was in 1584

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for glib



English Language Learners Definition of glib

: said or done too easily or carelessly : showing little preparation or thought

: speaking in a smooth, easy way that is not sincere


\ˈglib \
glibber; glibbest

Kids Definition of glib

: speaking or spoken carelessly and often insincerely a glib answer

Other Words from glib

glibly adverb

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on glib

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with glib

Spanish Central: Translation of glib

Nglish: Translation of glib for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of glib for Arabic Speakers

Comments on glib

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


having a pattern of small flowers

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Find the Cousins

  • a-large-tree-with-many-branches
  • Which pair shares a common word ancestor?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!