- a cake flavored with ginger and molasses
- a kind of cookie cut from a rolled-out dough flavored with ginger and molasses
- showy ornamentation, as gaudy or fancy carvings on furniture, gables, etc.
Origin of gingerbreadMiddle English ginge bred, altered (after bred, bread) ; from gingebras, preserved ginger, ginger pudding ; from Old French gingembraz ; from gingibre ; from Medieval Latin gingiber, ginger
- a. A dark molasses cake flavored with ginger.b. A molasses and ginger cookie cut in various shapes, sometimes elaborately decorated.
- a. Elaborate ornamentation.b. Superfluous or tasteless embellishment, especially in architecture.
Origin of gingerbreadMiddle English gingebred, a stiff pudding, preserved ginger, alteration (influenced by bred, bread, bread) of Old French gingembrat, from Medieval Latin *gingibrātum, from gingiber, ginger; see ginger.
From Old French gingembras, gingimbrat, preserved ginger, from medieval Latin *gingimbrātus, "gingered" (presumably referring to ginger that perhaps had a pharmaceutical use for some medicinal preparation), with intrusive m from medieval Latin gingiber, ginger. The third syllable was early confounded with bread, and the insertion of an r in the second syllable completed the semblance of a compound word.