Gounod's music struggles nobly with the tawdriness and sentimentality of the libretto.
There is a tawdriness about them all, something artificial and unreal.
In spite of the gilded sea-horses and chariot, there is no tawdriness here; all is bold, splendid, and imposing.
In England she had borrowed the untidiness and tawdriness that degrade the English poor.
Hygiene has not passed within the Mellah's walls, but a certain amount of Western tawdriness has.
In the midst of all the tawdriness she was a still and sacred figure—a Madonna with a child.
To us it seems to bear a nearer affinity to the tawdriness of poverty, or the spasms and convulsions of weakness.
Hence the tawdriness which is justly alleged against much Italian literature.
The picturesque old fought a brave battle with the tinsel and tawdriness of the new.
I won in that moment an impression of the tawdriness of mere beauty which I have never gotten over.
"cheap, showy, gaudy," 1670s, adjective use of noun tawdry "silk necktie for women" (1610s), shortened from tawdry lace (1540s), an alteration of St. Audrey's lace, a necktie or ribbon sold at the annual fair at Ely on Oct. 17 commemorating St. Audrey (queen of Northumbria, died 679). Her association with cheap lace necklaces is that she supposedly died of a throat tumor, which she considered God's punishment for her youthful fondness for showy necklaces [Bede].