- a neckpiece or collar of lace, lawn, or the like, gathered or drawn into deep, full, regular folds, worn in the 16th and 17th centuries.
- something resembling such a piece in form or position.
- a collar, or set of lengthened or specially marked hairs or feathers, on the neck of an animal.
- Ornithology. a species of European and Asian sandpiper, Philomachus pugnax, the male of which has a large erectile ruff of feathers during the breeding season.Compare reeve3.
- Alaska and Northern Canada. a fringe of fur around the edge of a parka hood or along the edges of a jacket.
Origin of ruff1
- an act or instance of trumping when one cannot follow suit.
- an old game of cards, resembling whist.
- to trump when unable to follow suit.
Origin of ruff2
- a small European freshwater fish, Acerina cernua, of the perch family.
Origin of ruff3
Examples from the Web for ruff
Who would wear for every sigh Blood's red flower upon his ruff?Enamels and Cameos and other Poems
He was sitting in uniform on the other side of the fire, reading Ruff's Guide.
Ruff with left alone, especially with your partner's make or adoption.The Laws of Euchre
H. C. Leeds
The ruff, Machetes pugnax, was believed by Montague to be polygamous.More Letters of Charles Darwin Volume II
Miss Ruff saw how Lady Longspade passed on, but she was nothing disconcerted.The Bertrams
- a circular pleated, gathered, or fluted collar of lawn, muslin, etc, often starched or wired, worn by both men and women in the 16th and 17th centuries
- zoology a natural growth of long or coloured hair or feathers around the necks of certain animals or birds
- an Old World shore bird, Philomachus pugnax, the male of which has a large erectile ruff of feathers in the breeding season: family Scolopacidae (sandpipers, etc), order Charadriiformes
- the male of this birdCompare reeve 3
- another word for trump 1
- an old card game similar to whist
- cards another word for trump 1 (def. 4)
- another name for roughie 1
Word Origin and History for ruff
kind of large collar, stiffly starched, especially common in the seventeenth century, 1520s, originally in reference to sleeves (of collars, from 1550s), probably a shortened form of ruffle.
Card-playing sense is a separate word, from a former game of that name (1580s), from Middle French roffle, earlier romfle (early 15c.), from Italian ronfa, perhaps a corruption of trionfo "triumph" (from French; cf. trump). The game was in vogue c.1590-1630.
in cards, 1760, from ruff (n.). Related: Ruffed; ruffing.