• zilch


    nothing

Translation


zilch = nix, null, gar nichts

Statistics


In the press


Anyway, once the news is out that really, all those CDS's and other financial instruments are really worth ZILCH, then everyone will really try to sell everything.

The Economist

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If your advertising budget is ZILCH, the most cost-effective way of getting attention and generating sales for your product or service is through publicity. Also known as free advertising, it's an often-overlooked marketing tool that's essential to business success.

Essence Magazine

Did you know?


zilch
noun or adjective

1. zero; nothing
2. A person regarded as being insignificant; a nobody.

adapted from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition. 2000

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WORD ORIGIN


The origin of zilch is unknown, but could possibly be a combination of zero and nil.

The Online Etymology Dictionary suggests a couple of potential sources including the name of a comic character in the 1930s magazine Ballyhoo (Mr. Zilch) and the slang Joe Zilsch, a 1900s college expression meaning an insignificant person.

Zilch can be used in many different contexts and is often applied in a negative sense:

- He knows zilch about marketing.
- I got zilch for my old computer at the flea market.

A word of caution. In conversations, one often hears the word zilch in double negative phrases, a habit that should be avoided:

- He doesn't know zilch about marketing.
- I didn't get zilch for my old computer at the flea market.

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SYNONYMS
zip, nothing, squat, diddly, nil, nix, null, zero

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PRACTICE OWAD TODAY
say something like:

“I worked on this project for three months and now it's been cancelled. What do I get for all my hard work? ZILCH!”

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