from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Rumor or talk of a personal, sensational, or intimate nature.
  • noun A person who habitually spreads intimate or private rumors or facts.
  • noun Trivial, chatty talk or writing.
  • noun A close friend or companion.
  • noun Chiefly British A godparent.
  • intransitive verb To engage in or spread gossip.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A sponsor; one who answers for a child in baptism; a godfather or godmother.
  • noun A friend or neighbor; an intimate companion.
  • noun One who goes about tattling and telling news; an idle tattler.
  • noun Idle talk, as of one friend or acquaintance to another; especially, confidential or minutely personal remarks about other people; tattle; scandal; trifling or groundless report.
  • To be a boon companion.
  • To talk idly, especially about other people; chat; tattle.
  • To stand godfather to.
  • To repeat as gossip: as, to gossip scandal.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb obsolete To stand sponsor to.
  • intransitive verb obsolete To make merry.
  • intransitive verb To prate; to chat; to talk much.
  • intransitive verb To run about and tattle; to tell idle tales.
  • noun A sponsor; a godfather or a godmother.
  • noun obsolete A friend or comrade; a companion; a familiar and customary acquaintance.
  • noun One who runs house to house, tattling and telling news; an idle tattler.
  • noun The tattle of a gossip; groundless rumor.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Someone who likes to talk about someone else’s private or personal business.
  • noun Idle talk about someone’s private or personal matters, especially someone not present.
  • noun A genre in contemporary media, usually focused on the personal affairs of celebrities.
  • verb To talk about someone else's private or personal business, especially in a way that spreads the information.
  • verb To talk idly.

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

  • verb talk socially without exchanging too much information
  • noun a person given to gossiping and divulging personal information about others
  • verb wag one's tongue; speak about others and reveal secrets or intimacies
  • noun a report (often malicious) about the behavior of other people
  • noun light informal conversation for social occasions


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

[Middle English godsib, gossip, godparent, from Old English godsibb : god, god; see god + sibb, kinsman; see s(w)e- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English gossib, godsib ("a close friend or relation, a confidant"), from Old English godsibb ("godparent, sponsor"), equivalent to god +‎ sib.


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  • Who would have thought! Gossip=Godparent; God+sib(sibling); Later became "any familiar person," later "idle talk," and then "to talk idly about the affirs of others."

    July 17, 2007

  • Fantastic! That is why I love etymology.

    August 13, 2008