What is she to sneer at a brave, enduring race of fellow-beings! Dress them in tawdry rags, locate them anywhere on the continent, write out their history in sounding claptrap, and she would be stirred by pathetic thrills.
-- John Trafford Clegg, David's Loom: a story of Rochdale's life in the early years of the nineteenth century, 1894
...it was on the whole an enormous piece of claptrap; the room, almost vacant when I entered, began to fill.
-- Charotte Brontë, Villette, 1853
Claptrap came to English in the 1720s as a portmanteau of clap and trap.