You know how a fanfare is a fancy little blast on a trumpet or bugle? Imagine someone who toots out a fanfare to celebrate her own accomplishments. A fanfaron is someone who brags a lot.
(A fanfaron is also a showy display or a flourish.)
So, fanfaronade is a big show of bragging--and whatever is being bragged about is usually exaggerated or completely false.
FAN far uh NADE
Part of speech:
Sometimes a countable noun ("a fanfaronade of something")
and other times an uncountable noun ("the fanfaronade," "this fanfaronade," "much fanfaronade," "such fanfaronade," etc.)
How to use it:
This is a fancy and rare word, so it's best used tongue-in-cheek. Saying "fanfaronade" is like saying "la-di-da:" you're echoing, and thereby making fun of, whatever boastful display you're talking about. Even if your listeners don't know this word, they'll recognize its relationship to "fanfare," and your context and tone will also make the meaning clear.
Talk about someone doing something with fanfaronade, with much fanfaronade, with unrelenting fanfaronade, etc., as in "He announced his bid for the presidency with all the expected fanfaronade."
And, you can use the word possessively: "her fanfaronade is getting on my nerves," "their fanfaronade is ridiculous."
You can also talk about a fanfaronade of something: a fanfaronade of media attention, a fanfaronade of obnoxious advertising, a fanfaronade of praise in the obviously fake online product review.
Lastly, just talk about fanfaronade in general. For instance, you could shake your head at all the fanfaronade at a meeting, or point out when someone's bragging is "only fanfaronade," meaning it's definitely just exaggeration or lies.
I tend to skim past Facebook updates that start with "I'd just like to thank..." because whatever follows is usually fanfaronade, not gratitude.
His latest album has two catchy songs followed by eleven that are pure fanfaronade.
Look away from the screen to explain the definition in your own words. You’ll know you understand what "fanfaronade" means when you can explain it without saying “empty bragging" or "boastful display."
Think of someone you know who brags a lot, and fill in the blanks: "(Person's) claim that _____ turned out to be just fanfaronade."
Example: "The parent's claim that her child was light-years ahead of his classmates turned out to be just fanfaronade; the kid was great to work with but fairly average in academics."
Spend at least 20 seconds occupying your mind with the game and quote below. Then try the review questions. Don’t go straight to the review now—let your working memory empty out first.
We’re starting off with easy questions, then working our way toward some whoppers at the end of the month, all the while focusing on funny, unusual words; surprising word histories; and cool tidbits about the language.
What word is the plural of both “axis” and “ax”?
Try this one today:
“Bellysinkers,” “doorknobs,” and “burl cakes” are nicknames for what kind of treat?
A Point Well Made:
Noam Chomsky: “If we don't believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don't believe in it at all.”
1. The opposite of FANFARONADE is
2. Without a shred of his usual fanfaronade, he said, "_____"
A. Let me show you a fantastic way to do that. I invented it myself.
B. I'd like to be able to help you with that, but it's outside my skill set.
C. If we can keep at this for just a few more hours, I think we can meet the deadline.
Answers are below.
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Disclaimer: Word meanings presented here are expressed in plain language and are limited to common, useful applications only. Readers interested in authoritative and multiple definitions of words are encouraged to check a dictionary. Likewise, word meanings, usage, and pronunciations are limited to American English; these elements may vary across world Englishes.
Answers to review questions:
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