- to destroy the smoothness or evenness of: The wind ruffled the sand.
- to erect (the feathers), as a bird in anger.
- to disturb, vex, or irritate: to be ruffled by a perceived slight.
- to turn (the pages of a book) rapidly.
- to pass (cards) through the fingers rapidly in shuffling.
- to draw up (cloth, lace, etc.) into a ruffle by gathering along one edge.
- to be or become ruffled; undulate; flutter: Flags ruffle in the wind.
- to be or become vexed or irritated.
- to put on airs; swagger.
- a break in the smoothness or evenness of some surface; undulation.
- a strip of cloth, lace, etc., drawn up by gathering along one edge and used as a trimming on a dress, blouse, etc.
- some object resembling this, as the ruff of a bird.
- disturbance or vexation; annoyance; irritation: It is impossible to live without some daily ruffles to our composure.
- a disturbed state of mind; perturbation.
Origin of ruffle1
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for ruffly
Women 'most alluz is,—'specially wen it's so ruffly as it is to-day.
"Then take three, one for the waist and two for the ruffly skirt," said Rose.
- to make, be, or become irregular or rumpledto ruffle a child's hair; a breeze ruffling the water
- to annoy, irritate, or be annoyed or irritated
- (tr) to make into a ruffle; pleat
- (of a bird) to erect (its feathers) in anger, display, etc
- (tr) to flick (cards, pages, etc) rapidly with the fingers
- an irregular or disturbed surface
- a strip of pleated material used for decoration or as a trim
- zoology another name for ruff 1 (def. 2)
- annoyance or irritation
- a low continuous drumbeat
- (tr) to beat (a drum) with a low repetitive beat
- (intr) archaic to behave riotously or arrogantly; swagger
Word Origin and History for ruffly
early 14c., "to disturb the smoothness of," perhaps from Old Norse hrufla "to scratch," or Low German ruffelen "to wrinkle, curl," both of unknown origin. Meaning "disarrange" (hair or feathers) first recorded late 15c.; sense of "annoy, distract" is from 1650s. Related: Ruffled; ruffling.
"ornamental frill," 1707, from ruffle (v.).