verbiage was our Word of the Day on 04/16/2013. Hear the podcast!
Examples of verbiage in a Sentence
NOT the least of the many trials inflicted upon the Boston Red Sox has been a torrent of verbiage. Surely no team in recent memory has been so scrutinized, complained about and then elegized. —Charles McGrath, New York Times Book Review, 13 Aug. 2006
Fashionable courtiers in the Renaissance adopted the doublet. … The cotton padding of this jacket, called bombast (the source of the term for inflated verbiage), was gradually increased to give courtiers the pumped-up look. —John Tierney, New York Times, 21 Jan. 1999
To find the height of arcane verbiage look no farther than Rule 10 of the rules governing Major League Baseball, in what is known as the Blue Book. The corresponding entry explains the waivers system—the procedures that pertain to certain player transactions—in a way that makes the Magna Carta look like part of the Jackie Collins oeuvre. —Tom Verducci, Sports Illustrated, 25 Aug. 1997
Sure, some contract verbiage is so objectionable, it can be considered against public policy; in fact, the most arduous hold-harmless clauses would probably be thrown out of court. —Leon H. Ciesla, Plane & Pilot, March 1995
Is word processing truly the wonder it seems or will it turn out to be but a mere exercise in verbose verbiage? —Erik Sandberg-Diment, New York Times, 26 June 1984
The editor removed some of the excess verbiage from the article.
teachers loathe the verbiage that students resort to in order to pad a paper
Recent Examples of verbiage from the Web
The movie pops and fizzes with invention, and even takes time out, now and then, to educate—screeching to a halt and summoning a celebrity (Selena Gomez, say, or Margot Robbie) to steer us through the economic verbiage.
in the worst, collegiate sense: not fiction or poetry or memoir or essay, but verbiage that manages to be both all of them and none—formless, monotonous, self-indulgent, and dull.
The Times had asked for Trump's thoughts on the matter because, just days before, Spencer had invoked Nazi verbiage at an event in Washington D.C.
The battle between facts and verbiage is being intensely fought right now in one specialized area—the application of the death penalty to defendants with intellectual disability (ID).
Buried in the verbiage is a treasure of insights, some truly original, some familiar but described from new and compelling angles.
The verbiage in Cook and Moore's skit is what sent Hodgman on this journey.
There’s another $20 billion for renewable energy and energy efficiency tax credits and related sweetners; verbiage inserted into this bill also allows for the refunding of last year’s clean power investment tax credit.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'verbiage'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
Verbiage descends from Middle French verbier ("to chatter"), itself an offspring of "werbler," an Old French word meaning "to trill." The usual sense of the word implies an overabundance of possibly unnecessary words. It is similar to "wordiness," except that it stresses the superfluous words themselves more than the quality that produces them. In other words, a writer with a fondness for "verbiage" might be accused of "wordiness." Some people think the phrase "excess verbiage" is redundant, but that's not necessarily true. In the early 19th century, "verbiage" developed a second sense meaning, simply, "wording," with no suggestion of excess. This second definition has sometimes been treated as an error by people who insist that "verbiage" must always imply excessiveness, but that sense is well-established and can be considered standard.
Origin and Etymology of verbiage
borrowed from French, from verbier “to trill, warble” (going back to Medieval French verboier “to twitter,” altered from Medieval French dialect (Picard) verbloier, guerbloier, derivative of werbler “to sing expressively, trill”) + -age -age — more at 1warble ◆The meaning of French verbiage clearly shows the associative influence of verbe “word, verb” and its derivatives.
First Known Use: circa 1721
VERBIAGE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of verbiage for English Language Learners
: speech or writing that contains too many words or that uses words that are more difficult than necessary
Learn More about verbiage
Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for verbiage
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