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[smawr-guh s-bawrd, -bohrd or, often, shmawr-] /ˈsmɔr gəsˌbɔrd, -ˌboʊrd or, often, ˈʃmɔr-/
a buffet meal of various hot and cold hors d'oeuvres, salads, casserole dishes, meats, cheeses, etc.
an extensive array or variety:
The company has a smorgasbord of employee benefits.
Also, smörgåsbord
[Swedish smœr-gaws-boord] /Swedish ˈsmœr gɔsˌburd/ (Show IPA)
Origin of smorgasbord
1915-20; < Swedish smörgsbord, equivalent to smörgs sandwich + bord table Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for smorgasbord
  • All one needs to do is take a drive through a low income neighborhood and you'll find a smorgasbord of fast food joints.
  • The burrowing owls, suddenly lacking a smorgasbord of mouse meat, resort to hunting petrels.
  • Both the main parties kicked off their campaigns with a smorgasbord of promises.
  • Its vision of the future, however, is a smorgasbord of whiz-bang inventions.
  • The world's biggest collider hopes to create a smorgasbord of exotic particles.
  • No rich country needs a smorgasbord of subsidies for manufacturing.
  • When it does work, this thing is an entertainment smorgasbord.
  • Last week's release of new divorce statistics led to a smorgasbord of reporting feeding the myth.
  • It goes particularly well with the marinated and pickled herring, salads and cold meats of the smorgasbord.
  • He was hauled before the police board numerous times, facing a smorgasbord of charges that should have gotten him fired.
British Dictionary definitions for smorgasbord


/ˈsmɔːɡəsˌbɔːd; ˈsmɜː-/
a variety of cold or hot savoury dishes, such as pâté, smoked salmon, etc, served in Scandinavia as hors d'oeuvres or as a buffet meal
Word Origin
Swedish, from smörgås sandwich + bord table
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 smorgasbord

1893, from Swedish smörgåsbord "open sandwich table," literally "butter-goose table," from smörgås, which is said to mean "bread and butter," but is compounded from smör "butter" (see smear (n.)) and gås, literally "goose" (and from the same Germanic root that yielded English goose (n.)), which is said by OED to have a secondary meaning of "a clump (of butter)." The final element is bord "table," from Proto-Germanic *burdam "plank, board, table" (see board (n.1)). Figurative sense of "medley, miscellany" is recorded from 1948.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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