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[gaj-it] /ˈgædʒ ɪt/
a mechanical contrivance or device; any ingenious article.
Origin of gadget
1850-55; origin uncertain; compare French gâchette the catch of a lock, sear of a gunlock
Related forms
[gaj-i-tee] /ˈgædʒ ɪ ti/ (Show IPA),
contraption; whatsis, doohickey, thingamajig. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for gadget
  • It was the ideal dance for the transistorized age, converting the body itself into a novelty device-a nifty gadget.
  • Anyone who is trying to authenticate your research will now have to buy some gadget.
  • One of its first projects is to design a laser-based gadget that can diagnose the condition of crops.
  • But conductive materials aren't enough to make an electronic gadget work.
  • The gadget compiles the info by aggregating search queries for the virus geographically.
  • In these days of always-on devices, there's nothing worse than a dead gadget.
  • They've got those headphones in their ears and a gadget in every hand.
  • No other gadget you can carry in your bag is as valuable.
  • Each manufacturer has its own guidelines, so read the manual before using this on any gadget.
  • Everybody on the subway is fooling around with some electronic gadget and missing their stop.
British Dictionary definitions for gadget


a small mechanical device or appliance
any object that is interesting for its ingenuity or novelty rather than for its practical use
Derived Forms
gadgety, adjective
Word Origin
C19: perhaps from French gâchette lock catch, trigger, diminutive of gâche staple
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
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Word Origin and History for gadget

1886, gadjet (but said to date back to 1850s), sailors' slang word for any small mechanical thing or part of a ship for which they lacked, or forgot, a name; perhaps from French gâchette "catchpiece of a mechanism" (15c.), diminutive of gâche "staple of a lock."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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