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rebuff

[noun ri-buhf, ree-buhf; verb ri-buhf] /noun rɪˈbʌf, ˈri bʌf; verb rɪˈbʌf/
noun
1.
a blunt or abrupt rejection, as of a person making advances.
2.
a peremptory refusal of a request, offer, etc.; snub.
3.
a check to action or progress.
verb (used with object)
4.
to give a rebuff to; check; repel; refuse; drive away.
Origin of rebuff
1580-1590
1580-90; < Middle French rebuffer < Italian ribuffare to disturb, reprimand, derivative of ribuffo (noun), equivalent to ri- re- + buffo puff; see buffoon
Related forms
rebuffable, adjective
rebuffably, adverb
unrebuffable, adjective
unrebuffed, adjective
Synonyms
4. snub, slight, reject, spurn.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for rebuff
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Subconsciously his busy ego was finding solace after last night's rebuff.

    K Mary Roberts Rinehart
  • Grant grinned at Miss Georgie, forgetting for the moment his rebuff that morning.

    Good Indian B. M. Bower
  • At the house of an old lady of seventy, a paralytic, the rebuff was of a different kind.

    Doctor Pascal Emile Zola
  • Kate pretended to be angry at the rebuff, and pouted her lips, but her eyes were beaming.

    The Manxman Hall Caine
  • Twas as though he must suffer the rebuff with no offended question.

  • Yet even from this rebuff he managed to deftly extract a compliment.

    James Boswell William Keith Leask
  • Madame Beattie seemed not to suspect the possibility of rebuff.

    The Prisoner Alice Brown
  • People do fear a rebuff wonderfully, and all her audacity was in her thoughts.

    Chance Joseph Conrad
British Dictionary definitions for rebuff

rebuff

/rɪˈbʌf/
verb (transitive)
1.
to snub, reject, or refuse (a person offering help or sympathy, an offer of help, etc) abruptly or out of hand
2.
to beat back (an attack); repel
noun
3.
a blunt refusal or rejection; snub
4.
any sudden check to progress or action
Word Origin
C16: from Old French rebuffer, from Italian ribuffare, from ribuffo a reprimand, from ri-re- + buffo puff, gust, apparently of imitative origin
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 rebuff
v.

1580s, from obsolete French rebuffer "to check, snub," from Italian ribuffare "to check, chide, snide," from ribuffo "a snub," from ri- "back" (from Latin re-, see re-) + buffo "a puff," of imitative origin (cf. buffet (v.)). Related: Rebuffed; rebuffing.

n.

1610s, from rebuff (v.), or from Middle French rebuffe or Italian ribuffo.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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