gimcrack vs trumpery what difference

what is difference between gimcrack and trumpery


Alternative forms

  • jimcrack




  • IPA(key): /ˈd͡ʒɪmkɹæk/


gimcrack (not comparable)

  1. Showy but of poor quality; worthless.


gimcrack (plural gimcracks)

  1. Something showy but worthless; a gimmick or bauble.
    • 1847–1848, William Thackeray, Vanity Fair:
      [] he came home to find [] honest Swartz in her favourite amber-coloured satin, with turquoise bracelets, countless rings, flowers, feathers, and all sorts of tags and gimcracks, about as elegantly decorated as a she chimney-sweep on May-day.

Derived terms

  • gimcrackery


gimcrack (third-person singular simple present gimcracks, present participle gimcracking, simple past and past participle gimcracked)

  1. (transitive) To put together quickly and without much care; to bodge.
  2. (transitive) To embellish with gimcracks.



Borrowed from French tromperie (deceit).


  • (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ˈtɹʌmpəɹi/
  • Hyphenation: trump‧ery


trumpery (plural trumperies)

  1. Worthless finery; bric-a-brac or junk.
    • 1610, William Shakespeare, The Tempest, Act IV, scene 1:
      PROSPERO.[To Ariel]

      This was well done, my bird.
      Thy shape invisible retain thou still:
      The trumpery in my house, go bring it hither
      For stale to catch these thieves.
  2. Nonsense.
    • 1698, Robert South, “The Lineal Descent of Jesus of Nazareth from David by his Blessed Mother the Virgin Mary. Proved in a Discourse on Rev. xxii. 16.”, in Twelve Sermons Preached upon Several Subjects and Occasions, volume III, London: Printed by Tho[mas] Warren for Thomas Bennet, OCLC 272362693; republished as Twelve Sermons upon Several Subjects and Occasions, volume III, 6th edition, London: Printed by J. Bettenham, for Jonah Bowyer, at the Rose in Pater-noster Row, 1727, OCLC 85047152, page 287:
      Now upon the coming of Chriſt, very much, tho’ not all, of this idolatrous Trumpery and Superſtition was driven out of the World: []
  3. (obsolete) Deceit; fraud.
    • 1640, Richard Greenwey, The Annales of Cornelius Tacitus. The Description of Germanie, publ. by Richard Whitaker, 182.
    • 1859, Wilkie Collins, The Woman in White:
      In that case there is no need for me to write about the trumpery scandal by which I was the sufferer—the innocent sufferer, I positively assert.



trumpery (not comparable)

  1. Gaudy but worthless.
    • 1887, Charles Mackay, Through the Long Day: Or, Memorials of a Literary Life (page 113)
      I also remember the old Royal Mews that stood on the site of the present trumpery National Gallery, with its too suggestive pepper-boxes; []
    • 1954, Anthony Buckeridge, According to Jennings, London: William Collins, Sons, OCLC 255905255; republished London: Stratus Books, 2003, ISBN 978-0-7551-0165-8, page 136:
      “Of all the trumpery moonshine!” Mr Wilkins exploded. “What do you think you’re playing at, Jennings!”

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