\ \ [19] Gullible is a derivative of the now archaic gulldupe’, itself a verbal use of the noun gullgullible person, simpleton’. This appears to have been a figurative extension of an earlier gullnewly hatched bird’ [14], which survived dialectally into the late 19th century, and was itself perhaps a noun use of the obsolete adjective gullyellow’ (borrowed from Old Norse gulr and still extant in Swedish and Danish gulyellow’). Some etymologists, however, derive the noun gullsimpleton’ from an obsolete verb gullswallow’ [16], which goes back ultimately to Old French gole, goulethroat’ (source of English gullet).

Word origins - 2ed. . 2005.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Gullible — Gul li*ble, a. Easily gulled; that may be duped. {Gul li*bii i*ty}, n. Burke. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • gullible — index credulous, naive, unsuspecting Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • gullible — 1825, apparently a back formation from GULLIBILITY (Cf. gullibility). Gullable is attested from 1818 …   Etymology dictionary

  • gullible — *credulous Analogous words: duped, befooled, hoaxed, hoodwinked (see DUPE): deluded, beguiled, deceived, misled (see DECEIVE): im pressionable, susceptible (see SENTIENT) Antonyms: astute …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • gullible — meaning ‘easily fooled or cheated’, is spelt ible not able …   Modern English usage

  • gullible — [adj] naive, trusting being a sucker*, believing, biting, credulous, easily taken in*, easy mark*, falling hook line and sinker*, foolish, green*, innocent, kidding oneself*, mark*, silly, simple, sucker, susceptible, swallowing whole*, taken in* …   New thesaurus

  • gullible — ► ADJECTIVE ▪ easily persuaded to believe something; credulous. DERIVATIVES gullibility noun gullibly adverb. ORIGIN from GULL(Cf. ↑gull) …   English terms dictionary

  • gullible — [gul′ə bəl] adj. [ GULL2, vt. + IBLE] easily cheated or tricked; credulous: also Rare gullable gullibility n. gullibly adv …   English World dictionary

  • gullible — [[t]gʌ̱lɪb(ə)l[/t]] ADJ GRADED If you describe someone as gullible, you mean they are easily tricked because they are too trusting. What point is there in admitting that the stories fed to the gullible public were false?... I m so gullible I… …   English dictionary

  • gullible — adjective he was a swindler who preyed on gullible elderly widows Syn: credulous, naive, overtrusting, overtrustful, easily deceived, easily taken in, exploitable, dupable, impressionable, unsuspecting, unsuspicious, unwary, ingenuous, innocent,… …   Thesaurus of popular words

  • gullible — gul|li|ble [ gʌləbl ] adjective a gullible person is easy to trick because they trust and believe people too easily: gullible tourists ─ opposite CYNICAL …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

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