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A small specialized mechanical or electronic device; a contrivance.
[Perhaps originally 19th century glassblowers' jargon gadget, spring-pressure clip at the end of a punty to hold the foot of a glass being blown without creating a mark, probably from French gâchette, pawl, tumbler in a gunlock, strike plate : gâche, strike plate, collar or bracket for a pipe (from Middle French gasche, strike plate, iron hook, from Old French, calk of a shoe or horseshoe, from Frankish *gaspia, buckle, clasp; akin to Middle Dutch gespe, probably (with metathesis) from Germanic *gapsō, *gipsō; akin to Old Norse geispa, to yawn, and gapa, to gape) + -ette, diminutive suffix (from Middle French, from Old French; see -ette).]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.