U.S. Representative Maury Maverick coined the word Gobbledygook after the gobbling of turkeys. Gobbledygook means “inflated, involved, and obscure verbiage characteristic of the pronouncements of officialdom,” according to Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary. In 1944, Maverick wrote a memo to his staff in which he told them to stay away from wordy, unintelligible correspondence. “Don’t use so much gobbledygook.” This memo was picked up by the press and printed in other publications, and the word soon became synonymous with pompous wordy talk.
Maury’s grandfather, Samuel A. Maverick, a cattle owner who did not brand his calves, is responsible for giving the word maverick its meaning. Again referring to the dictionary, maverick means “an unbranded animal especially a mother’s calf formerly customarily claimed by the first one branding it.” A second meaning is “a refractory or recalcitrant party or group” which “initiates an independent course.” It has been written that when Samuel Maverick, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, went into the cattle business before the Civil War, he branded his stock with his MK brand. He failed, however, to brand his initial herd. Thereafter, when a cowboy stumbled across an unbranded steer he considered it Maverick’s, or a maverick.
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