Why was clemency trending last week?


[gahr-bij] /ˈgɑr bɪdʒ/
discarded animal and vegetable matter, as from a kitchen; refuse.
any matter that is no longer wanted or needed; trash.
anything that is contemptibly worthless, inferior, or vile:
There's nothing but garbage on TV tonight.
worthless talk; lies; foolishness.
Slang. any unnecessary item added to something else, as for appearance only; garnish:
I'll have an Old Fashioned, but without the garbage.
useless artificial satellites or parts of rockets floating in space, as satellites that are no longer transmitting information or rocket boosters jettisoned in flight.
Computers. meaningless or unwanted data:
That program was not properly debugged and produced nothing but garbage.
Origin of garbage
1400-50; late Middle English: discarded parts of butchered fowls; compared with garbelage the removal of waste from spices (< Anglo-French, Old French; see garble, -age) or Old French garbage tax on sheaves of grain, though shift of sense, and form in first case, is unclear
2. litter, refuse, junk, rubbish. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for garbage
  • Even in the neighborhood where people pick up litter every day, they still have to pay someone to haul off the garbage.
  • Shortly after that, tear it up and through it in the garbage.
  • garbage in, garbage out: dustmen make the best forecasts.
  • Last year, they also went to art exhibits in both cities, where live maps revealed the many paths garbage takes.
  • During one of my visits there was a great and stinky garbage strike.
  • Civic leaders need to wake up to how the city's future economic well-being is challenged by our garbage crisis.
  • They are garbage as far as teaching anything or having any academic standards, and never want to fail anyone.
  • No doubt, some people who now dutifully sort their garbage would give up.
  • Recycling as much of your household garbage as possible can significantly reduce your contribution to landfills.
  • Images of the world's garbage and pollution problems.
British Dictionary definitions for garbage


worthless, useless, or unwanted matter
Also called rubbish. discarded or waste matter; refuse
(computing) invalid data
(informal) nonsense
Word Origin
C15: probably from Anglo-French garbelage removal of discarded matter, of uncertain origin; compare Old Italian garbuglio confusion
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for garbage

early 15c., "giblets of a fowl, waste parts of an animal," later confused with garble in its sense of "siftings, refuse." Perhaps some senses derive from Old French garbe "a bundle of sheaves, entrails," from Proto-Germanic *garba- (cf. Dutch garf, German garbe "sheaf"), from PIE *ghrebh- "a handful, a grasp." Sense of "refuse, filth" is first attested 1580s; used figuratively for "worthless stuff" from 1590s. Garbology "study of waste as a social science" is from 1976.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for garbage


  1. One's father; old man: Studs felt that Mr O'Brien was different from his own gaffer (1659+)
  2. An old man: Look at that gaffer trying to stand on his head (1575+)
  3. A foreman or boss, such as the manager of a circus, head glassblower, chief electrician on a movie set, etc (1841 +)
Related Terms

old cocker

[fr British dialect, ''grandfather, godfather''; the dated meaning of the first sense is actually ''master, governor,'' often synonyms of ''father'']

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for garbage

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for garbage

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with garbage

Nearby words for garbage