A Word A Day : Bombastic

Monday, 21st January 2008 : Today's Word is ...


( Adjective )

Pronunciation : bom-bas-tik

1. (of speech, writing, etc.) high-sounding, high-flown, inflated, pretentious

2. ostentatiously lofty in style

3. of language that is full of long or pretentious words, used to impress others


Late 16th century. Alteration of Old French bombace - cotton stuffing - via medieval Latin bombax - cotton - Greek bombux - silk, silkworm


aureate, balderdash, big-talking, bullshitting, declamatory, euphuistic, flowery, fustian, grandiloquent, grandiose, high-flown, highfalutin, histrionic, inflated, loudmouth, magniloquent, orotund, ostentatious, overblown, ranting, rhapsodic, rhetorical, sonorous, swollen, tumid, turgid, verbose, windbag, windy, wordy


• Pompous, grandiloquent, turgid, florid, grandiose. Bombastic, flowery, pretentious, verbose all describe a use or a user of language more elaborate than is justified by or appropriate to the content being expressed.

• Bombastic suggests language with a theatricality or staginess of style far too powerful or declamatory for the meaning or sentiment being expressed.

...a bombastic sermon on the evils of cardplaying.

• Flowery describes language filled with extravagant images and ornate expressions:
a flowery eulogy.

• Pretentious refers specifically to language that is purposely inflated in an effort to impress:
a pretentious essay designed to demonstrate one's sophistication.

• Verbose characterizes utterances or speakers that use more words than necessary to express an idea:
a verbose speech, speaker.

• Grandiloquent means lofty in style, pompous, or bombastic.

• Magniloquent means lofty and extravagant in speech.


humble, quiet, reserved, restrained, subtle, understated

Contextual Examples:

• His speeches are outbursts of incredible arrogance, equally powerful and

• The writer's
bombastic, pompous style was a real turn-off for me.

Related Words:

bombast : Noun

bombaster : Noun

bombastically : Adverb

Enjoy this list and then get around for preparing your own list of words. There is no better way of boosting your words power. The most effective way to build your vocabulary is described in the page on Word Power. Educational research has discovered that your I.Q. is intimately related to your Word Power. Take a standard Vocabulary test and then an intelligent test, the result in both will be substantially the same. The more extensive your vocabulary, the better your chances of success, other things being equal- success in attaining your educational goals, success in moving ahead in your business or professional career, success in achieving your intellectual potential.

Previous Word|Next Word

Go to The A Word A Day Index

From Bombastic to HOME PAGE

© Copyright 2016 english-for-students.com.