from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A substance that gives nourishment; food.
  • n. Insipid intellectual nourishment: "TV . . . gobbled up comedy material and spat it out as pabulum” ( Richard Corliss).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. food or fodder, particularly that taken in by plants or animals.
  • n. material that feeds a fire.
  • n. food for thought.
  • n. bland intellectual fare; an undemanding diet of words.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The means of nutriment to animals or plants; food; nourishment.
  • n. That which feeds or sustains, such as fuel for a fire
  • n. Trite or simplistic writing, sentiments, etc.; pablum{3}.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Food, in the widest sense; aliment; nutriment; that which nourishes an animal or vegetable organism; by extension, that which nourishes or supports any physical process, as fuel for a fire.
  • n. Hence, food for thought; intellectual or spiritual nourishment or support.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. insipid intellectual nourishment
  • n. any substance that can be used as food


Latin pābulum; see pā- in Indo-European roots. Sense 2, by confusion with pablum.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin pābulum ("food, nourishment"), from pāscō ("I feed, nourish"). (Wiktionary)


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