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Interesting Words And Expressions – Brouhaha

What does brouhaha mean?

It is a noun and means a noisy and overexcited reaction or response to something.

How do you pronounce it?


or [brou·ha·ha]

Where does it come from?

Some etymologists think the word is onomatopoeic (imitating a sound) in origin, but others believe it comes from the Hebrew phrase “bārūkh habbā’,” meaning “blessed be he who enters”.

Although we borrowed our spelling and meaning of “brouhaha” directly from French in the late 19th century, etymologists have connected the French derivation to that frequently recited Hebrew phrase, distorted to something like “brouhaha” by worshipers whose knowledge of Hebrew was limited. Thus, once out of the synagogue, the word first meant “a noisy confusion of sound” — a sense that was later extended to refer to any tumultuous and confused situation.

How do you use it?

  1. brouhaha erupted over her statements about the president.

  2. There’s been a lot of brouhaha in the city about the prime minister’s decision to raise taxes.


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