Bombast was the name given to excessive padding men used to stick into their codpiece. They thought the impression of having a big willie would scare their enemies and entice the ladies, seeming more virile and strong.

The codpiece was often stuffed to ridiculous extents - and from this practice dirives the word 'bombastic'.

Bom"bast (?), n. [OF. bombace cotton, LL. bombax cotton, bombasium a doublet of cotton; hence, padding, wadding, fustian. See Bombazine.]

1.

Originally, cotton, or cotton wool.

[Obs.]

A candle with a wick of bombast. Lupton.

2.

Cotton, or any soft, fibrous material, used as stuffing for garments; stuffing; padding.

[Obs.]

How now, my sweet creature of bombast! Shak.

Doublets, stuffed with four, five, or six pounds of bombast at least. Stubbes.

3.

Fig.: High-sounding words; an inflated style; language above the dignity of the occasion; fustian.

Yet noisy bombast carefully avoid. Dryden.

 

© Webster 1913.


Bom"bast, a.

High-sounding; inflated; big without meaning; magniloquent; bombastic.

[He] evades them with a bombast circumstance,
Horribly stuffed with epithets of war. Shak.

Nor a tall metaphor in bombast way. Cowley.

 

© Webster 1913.


Bom*bast" (?), v. t.

To swell or fill out; to pad; to inflate.

[Obs.]

Not bombasted with words vain ticklish ears to feed. Drayton.

 

© Webster 1913.

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