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[ga-toh, gah-; French gah-toh] /gæˈtoʊ, gɑ-; French gɑˈtoʊ/
noun, plural gâteaux
[ga-toh-tohz, gah-; French gah-toh] /gæˈtoʊˈtoʊz, gɑ-; French gɑˈtoʊ/ (Show IPA).
French Cookery.
a cake, especially a very light sponge cake with a rich icing or filling.
1835-45; < French; Old French gastel (compare Middle English wastel < Old North French) < Frankish *wastil, perhaps akin to Old English, Old Saxon wist food, nourishment Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for gateau


noun (pl) -teaux (-təʊz)
any of various elaborate cakes, usually layered with cream and richly decorated
Word Origin
French: cake
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for gateau

1845, from French gâteau "cake," from Old French gastel, from Frankish *wastil "cake," from Proto-Germanic *was-tilaz, from PIE *wes- "to eat, consume."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for gateau


in general, any of a variety of breads, shortened or unshortened, usually shaped by the tin in which it is baked; more specifically, a sweetened bread, often rich or delicate.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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