Bunkum
Buncombe Bun"combe, Bunkum Bun"kum, n. [Buncombe a county of North Carolina.] Speech-making for the gratification of constituents, or to gain public applause; flattering talk for a selfish purpose; anything said for mere show. [Cant or Slang, U.S.] [1913 Webster]

All that flourish about right of search was bunkum -- all that brag about hanging your Canada sheriff was bunkum . . . slavery speeches are all bunkum. --Haliburton. [1913 Webster]

{To speak for Buncombe}, to speak for mere show, or popularly. [1913 Webster]

Note: ``The phrase originated near the close of the debate on the famous `Missouri Question,' in the 16th Congress. It was then used by Felix Walker -- a na["i]ve old mountaineer, who resided at Waynesville, in Haywood, the most western country of North Carolina, near the border of the adjacent county of Buncombe, which formed part of his district. The old man rose to speak, while the house was impatiently calling for the `Question,' and several members gathered round him, begging him to desist. He preserved, however, for a while, declaring that the people of his district expected it, and that he was bound to `make a speech for Buncombe.''' --W. Darlington. [1913 Webster] ||


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Bunkum — Bun kum, n. See {Buncombe}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • bunkum — index rodomontade Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • bunkum — variant of BUNCOMBE (Cf. Buncombe) …   Etymology dictionary

  • bunkum — (also buncombe) ► NOUN informal, dated ▪ nonsense. ORIGIN named after Buncombe County in North Carolina, mentioned in a speech made by its congressman solely to please his constituents (c.1820) …   English terms dictionary

  • bunkum — ☆ bunkum [buŋ′kəm ] n. [phonetic respelling of BUNCOMBE] Informal talk that is empty, insincere, or merely for effect; humbug …   English World dictionary

  • bunkum — [[t]bʌ̱ŋkəm[/t]] N UNCOUNT (disapproval) If you say that something that has been said or written is bunkum, you mean that you think it is completely untrue or very stupid. [INFORMAL, OLD FASHIONED] It s a load of bunkum. Syn: balderdash …   English dictionary

  • bunkum — [19] Buncombe is a county of North Carolina, USA. Around 1820, during a debate in the US Congress, its representative Felix Walker rose to make a speech. He spoke on – and on – and on. Fellow congressmen pleaded with him to sit down, but he… …   The Hutchinson dictionary of word origins

  • bunkum — AND buncombe [“barjkam] n. onsense. □ That’s just plain bunkum. □ Another candidate for governor means just that much more buncombe …   Dictionary of American slang and colloquial expressions

  • bunkum — [19] Buncombe is a county of North Carolina, USA. Around 1820, during a debate in the US Congress, its representative Felix Walker rose to make a speech. He spoke on – and on – and on. Fellow congressmen pleaded with him to sit down, but he… …   Word origins

  • bunkum — n. (also buncombe) nonsense; humbug. Etymology: orig. buncombe f. Buncombe County in N. Carolina, mentioned in a nonsense speech by its Congressman, c.1820 * * * bunkum etc.: see buncombe, etc …   Useful english dictionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”