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From Old French gibet (Modern French gibet), either from Frankish *gibb (forked stick) or from Latin gibbus (hunchbacked).[1]



gibbet (plural gibbets)

  1. An upright post with a crosspiece used for execution and subsequent public display.
    Synonyms: gallows
    • 1728, Otway, Thomas, “The Atheist, or, the Second Part of the Solider's Fortune”, in The Works of Mr. Thomas Otway[1], volume 2, London, page 37:
      No, had every Commandment but a Gibbet belonging to it, I ſhould not have had four King's Evidences to-day ſwear impudently I was a Papiſt, when I was never at Maſs yet ſince I was born, nor indeed at any other Worſhip theſe twenty Years.
  2. The projecting arm of a crane, from which the load is suspended; the jib.
  3. Human form structure made of iron bands designed to publicly display the corpse of an executed criminal.



gibbet (third-person singular simple present gibbets, present participle gibbeting or gibbetting, simple past and past participle gibbeted or gibbetted)

  1. (transitive) To execute (someone), or display (a body), on a gibbet.
  2. (transitive) To expose (someone) to ridicule or scorn.



  1. ^ Le Robert pour tous, Dictionnaire de la langue française, Janvier 2004, p. 520