baffle

[baf-uh l]

verb (used with object), baf·fled, baf·fling.

verb (used without object), baf·fled, baf·fling.

to struggle ineffectually, as a ship in a gale.

noun


Origin of baffle

1540–50; 1910–15 for def 8; perhaps < Scots bauchle to disgrace, treat with contempt, equivalent to bauch (see baff) + -le
Related formsbaf·fle·ment, nounbaf·fler, nounbaf·fling, adjectivebaf·fling·ly, adverbbaf·fling·ness, nounun·baf·fled, adjectiveun·baf·fling, adjectiveun·baf·fling·ly, adverb

Synonyms for baffle

1. See thwart.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for baffled

Contemporary Examples of baffled

Historical Examples of baffled

  • If the nation was determined it would not be baffled by the Peers.

    The Grand Old Man

    Richard B. Cook

  • Tories and Peers especially were enraged, and regarded themselves as baffled.

    The Grand Old Man

    Richard B. Cook

  • It had seemed to baffle the others; it baffled the big man now.

  • She leaned back in her chair, and surveyed the baffled man amusedly.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • Bartlett sat there for one moment the picture of baffled rage.



British Dictionary definitions for baffled

baffle

verb (tr)

to perplex; bewilder; puzzle
to frustrate (plans, efforts, etc)
to check, restrain, or regulate (the flow of a fluid or the emission of sound or light)
to provide with a baffle
obsolete to cheat or trick

noun

Also called: baffle board, baffle plate a plate or mechanical device designed to restrain or regulate the flow of a fluid, the emission of light or sound, or the distribution of sound, esp in a loudspeaker or microphone
Derived Formsbafflement, nounbaffler, noun

Word Origin for baffle

C16: perhaps from Scottish dialect bachlen to condemn publicly; perhaps related to French bafouer to disgrace
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

Word Origin and History for baffled

baffle

v.

1540s, "to disgrace," perhaps a Scottish respelling of bauchle "to disgrace publicly" (especially a perjured knight), which is probably related to French bafouer "to abuse, hoodwink" (16c.), possibly from baf, a natural sound of disgust, like bah (cf. German baff machen "to flabbergast"). Meaning "to bewilder, confuse" is from 1640s; that of "to defeat someone's efforts" is from 1670s. Related: Baffled; baffling.

baffle

n.

"shielding device," 1881, from baffle (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper