Definitions

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

  • noun Showy but worthless finery; bric-a-brac.
  • noun Nonsense; rubbish.
  • noun Deception; trickery; fraud.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun Deceit; fraud.
  • noun A showy thing of no intrinsic value; something intended to deceive by false show; worthless finery.
  • noun Useless stuff; rubbish; trash.
  • noun Nonsense; false or idle talk; foolishness.
  • Showy, but useless or unsubstantial; hence, trifling; worthless: as, trumpery ornaments.

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

  • adjective Worthless or deceptive in character.
  • noun obsolete Deceit; fraud.
  • noun Something serving to deceive by false show or pretense; falsehood; deceit; worthless but showy matter; hence, things worn out and of no value; rubbish.

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

  • noun worthless finery; bric-a-brac or junk
  • noun nonsense
  • adjective gaudy but of no value

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

  • noun ornamental objects of no great value
  • noun nonsensical talk or writing

Etymologies

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

[Middle English trompery, deceit, from Old French tromperie, from tromper, to deceive.]

Examples

  • "What trumpery is this?" he inquired, superciliously, noticing it almost immediately, and grasping the significance of it as promptly.

    Aleta Dey

  • Now, when a story is recited, that is, when it is treated as a dramatic performance, this kind of trumpery is permissible, if ill-advised.

    Death carries a camcorder

  • In the country, indeed, one is obliged to take up with all kind of trumpery; but in town I visit none but the women of women of quality.

    The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling

  • In the country, indeed, one is obliged to take up with all kind of trumpery; but in town I visit none but the women of quality.

    VIII. Containing Scenes of Altercation, of No Very Uncommon Kind. Book VII

  • The dinner which followed this unhappy beginning of the evening was as dismal and constrained as if poor "trumpery" were still present.

    A Young Mutineer

  • I wonder ---- But I suppose Floyd will save the rest of his 'trumpery' for her!

    Floyd Grandon's Honor

  • To describe all the trumpery which is immediately around it, in the original, would be a waste of time; but below are two good figures to the right, and two wretched ones to the left.

    A Bibliographical, Antiquarian and Picturesque Tour in France and Germany, Volume One

  • Henry had a contempt for all finery, and had called even his aunt's jewels, when they were first shown to him, "trumpery," asking "what they were good for?"

    Nature and Art

  • In the country, indeed, one is obliged to take up with all kind of trumpery; but in town I visit none but the women of women of quality.

    History of Tom Jones, a Foundling

  • "trumpery," and so supplement the idea of worthlessness with that other idea, equally grateful to the author, of deceit.

    Style

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.