kibbitz (KIH-bitz) listen


  • v. To make small talk or chat informally.

  • v. To give unsolicited advice while watching a game or watching others work.

  • v. To joke around, tease.

Example Sentences

  • "Adam and Mike are always kibbitzing at the back of the shul during davening."

  • “I was kibitzing, not playing.” (NJY)

  • “We were kibitzing around.” (NJY)

  • “Don’t kibitz; he’s sensitive." (NJY)

  • “He’s not employed there, he just kibitzes.” (NJY)

Languages of Origin

  • Yiddish


  • קיבעצן kíbetsn (verbal stem קיבעץ kíbets)

    • Who Uses This

      • Jews: Jews of diverse religious backgrounds and organizational involvements
      • Non-Jews: (words that have spread outside of Jewish networks)


      • North America
      • Great Britain
      • South Africa
      • Australia / New Zealand


      • The New Joys of Yiddish, by Leo Rosten and Lawrence Bush (New York, 2003[1968]).
      • Yiddish and English: A Century of Yiddish in America, by Sol Steinmetz (Tuscaloosa, 1986).
      • The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001).
      • Dictionary of Jewish Usage: A Popular Guide to the Use of Jewish Terms, by Sol Steinmetz (Lanham, MD, 2005).

      Alternative Spellings



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