\ \ [20] Gimmick originally meant ‘dishonest contrivance’ – indeed, in the first known printed reference to it, in George Maine’s and Bruce Grant’s Wise-crack dictionary 1926 (an American publication), it is defined specifically as a ‘device for making a fair game crooked’. The modern sense ‘stratagem for gaining attention’ seems to have come to the fore in the 1940s. The origins of the word are a mystery, although it has been suggested that it began as gimac, an anagram of magic used by conjurers.

Word origins - 2ed. . 2005.

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  • gimmick — gim‧mick [ˈgɪmɪk] noun [countable] disapproving a trick or object that makes you notice a product and want to buy it: • It would be foolish to dismiss the videophone as nothing more than a gimmick. gimmicky adjective : • a gimmicky new product… …   Financial and business terms

  • gimmick — index device (contrivance), stratagem Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • gimmick — 1926 (in Maine & Grant s Wise Crack Dictionary, which defines it as a device used for making a fair game crooked ), Amer.Eng., perhaps an alteration of gimcrack, or an anagram of magic …   Etymology dictionary

  • gimmick — a word of unknown origin meaning ‘a trick or device, especially to attract publicity or trade’, entered AmE in the 1920s, appearing first in glossaries and then in writers such as James Thurber (1948). Few other words have shared the speed with… …   Modern English usage

  • gimmick — [n] contrived object; scheme aid, apparatus, artifice, catch, concern, counterfeit, deceit, device, dodge*, fake, feint, fixture, fun, gadget, gambit, game, gizmo*, imposture, instrument, jest, maneuver, means, method, ploy, ruse, secret, shift,… …   New thesaurus

  • gimmick — ► NOUN ▪ a trick or device intended to attract attention rather than fulfil a useful purpose. DERIVATIVES gimmickry noun gimmicky adjective. ORIGIN originally in sense «piece of magicians apparatus»: of unknown origin …   English terms dictionary

  • gimmick — ☆ gimmick [gim′ik ] n. [< ? GIMCRACK] Informal 1. a) a secret means of controlling a gambling device b) anything that tricks or mystifies; deceptive or secret device 2. a) an attention getting device or feature, typically superficial, designed …   English World dictionary

  • Gimmick! — This article is about the video game. For the manga series, see Gimmick! (manga). Gimmick! Mr. Gimmick Japanese front and back boxart Developer(s) Authentic Entertainment Publ …   Wikipedia

  • Gimmick — Cette page d’homonymie répertorie les différents sujets et articles partageant un même nom. Sur les autres projets Wikimedia : « Gimmick », sur le Wiktionnaire (dictionnaire universel) Dans le langage courant, un gimmick est un… …   Wikipédia en Français

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