March 16, 2016 by Stephen Bentley
Bloviate – WordWednesdayFun
Bloviate is a word I must confess I had never heard of until a few days ago.
I guess that is because it is American in origin and more likely to be used in American English rather than the correct form of British English 🙂
It sounds rather jolly. So here we go with the usual format with the Merriam-Webster definition first followed by the Urban Dictionary. I wonder what lies in store for us with the latter entry?
verb blo·vi·ate \ˈblō-vē-ˌāt\
Popularity: Top 20% of words
: to speak or write verbosely and windily
blo·vi·a·tion \ˌblō-vē-ˈā-shən\ noun
Did You Know?
Warren G. Harding is often linked to “bloviate,” but to him the word wasn’t insulting; it simply meant “to spend time idly.” Harding used the word often in that “hanging around” sense, but during his tenure as the 29th U.S. President (1921-23), he became associated with the “verbose” sense of “bloviate,” perhaps because his speeches tended to the long-winded side. Although he is sometimes credited with having coined the word, it’s more likely that Harding picked it up from local slang while hanging around with his boyhood buddies in Ohio in the late 1800s. The term probably derives from a combination of the word blow plus the suffix -ate.
perhaps irregular from blow
First Known Use: circa 1879
And here is a comment left on the M-W website. I rather like it –
It was used as a descriptor of Donald Trump by a commentator.
Like · Reply · Mar 15, 2016 5:12am
Now, let’s see what the Urban Dictionary has to say:
To discourse at length in a pompous or boastful manner.
A key attribute to those that sell. To pretend to understand technical subject matter and sell it to others even dumber then oneself.
Tom, bloviated Matt’s shaft for hours on the merits of Mircosoft’s Swiss Cheese 1.0
by joe October 01, 2004
Bloviate is closely associated with U.S. President Warren G. Harding, who used it frequently and who was known for long, windy speeches. H.L. Mencken said of him, “He writes the worst English that I have ever encountered. It reminds me of a string of wet sponges; it reminds me of tattered washing on the line; it reminds me of stale bean soup, of college yells, of dogs barking idiotically through endless nights. It is so bad that a sort of grandeur creeps into it. It drags itself out of the dark abysm of pish, and crawls insanely up the topmost pinnacle of posh. It is rumble and bumble. It is flap and doodle. It is balder and dash.”After five years as president and thirty years as a political figure, this colossal oaf is still unable to discipline his urge to bloviate.by Mr. Corruption June 06, 2005