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[uh-loof] /əˈluf/
at a distance, especially in feeling or interest; apart:
They always stood aloof from their classmates.
reserved or reticent; indifferent; disinterested:
Because of his shyness, he had the reputation of being aloof.
Origin of aloof
1525-35; a-1 + loof luff windward
Related forms
aloofly, adverb
aloofness, noun
2. cool, detached; distant, standoffish; snobbish, haughty, disdainful.
1. near. 2. warm, open, gregarious, outgoing. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for aloofly
Historical Examples
  • Aubrey inquired, aloofly interested in the plot details of the narrative.

    Gargoyles Ben Hecht
  • He greeted them aloofly, and a little negro boy proffered tiny cups of China tea.

    The Yellow Claw Sax Rohmer
  • Once in such a group she recognized the girl who had eyed her aloofly on the train coming home from boarding school.

    Why Joan? Eleanor Mercein Kelly
  • They were still comically stiff-legged and bristly as they aloofly sniffed noses.

  • All her life she had gone about calmly and aloofly, her head in the clouds, her feet on mountain-tops.

    Parrot & Co.

    Harold MacGrath
  • aloofly though the Deanite lives, he is not altogether an unsocial being.

British Dictionary definitions for aloofly


distant, unsympathetic, or supercilious in manner, attitude, or feeling
Derived Forms
aloofly, adverb
aloofness, noun
Word Origin
C16: from a-1 + loof, a variant of luff
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for aloofly



1530s, from a- (1) + Middle English loof "weather gage," also "windward direction," probably from Dutch loef (Middle Dutch lof) "the weather side of a ship." Originally a nautical order to keep the ship's head to the wind, thus to stay clear of a lee-shore or some other quarter; hence the figurative sense of "at a distance, apart" (1580s). Related: Aloofly; aloofness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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