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fuzz1

[fuhz]
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noun
  1. loose, light, fibrous, or fluffy matter.
  2. a mass or coating of such matter: the fuzz on a peach.
  3. Slang. a man's very short haircut, similar to a crew cut.
  4. a blur: That photo is all fuzz.
  5. a distorted sound from an electric musical instrument, especially a guitar, produced by means of an electronic device.
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verb (used with or without object)
  1. to make or become blurred or unclear (sometimes followed by up or out): He fuzzed up the plot line with a lot of emotional nonsense. The image fuzzed and then disappeared.
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Origin of fuzz1

1595–1605; compare Dutch voos 'spongy, woolly'

fuzz2

[fuhz]
noun, plural fuzz, fuzz·es for 2. Slang.
  1. the police; police officers collectively.
  2. a police officer or detective.
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Origin of fuzz2

First recorded in 1925–30; of uncertain origin
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for fuzz

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • The moon rested on its little head and made its fuzz of hair a halo.

    In a Little Town

    Rupert Hughes

  • No, my dear Fuzz, I shall have no time to tell you how busy I am.

    Tom and Some Other Girls

    Mrs. George de Horne Vaizey

  • Or the sticks of cellulose, or the curved, wire device with fuzz at the ends?

    The Planet Strappers

    Raymond Zinke Gallun

  • Midnight found Wimley still looking the pajamas squarely in the fuzz.

    Bizarre

    Lawton Mackall

  • Fuzz, or hairiness, usually occurs on the wire side of the sheet.

    From Paper-mill to Pressroom

    William Bond Wheelwright


British Dictionary definitions for fuzz

fuzz1

noun
  1. a mass or covering of fine or curly hairs, fibres, etc
  2. a blur
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verb
  1. to make or become fuzzy
  2. to make or become indistinct; blur
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Word Origin

C17: perhaps from Low German fussig loose

fuzz2

noun
  1. a slang word for police, policeman
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Word Origin

C20: of uncertain 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

Word Origin and History for fuzz

n.

1590s, fusse, first attested in fusball "puff ball of tiny spores," of uncertain origin. Meaning "the police" is American English, 1929, underworld slang, origin and connection to the older word unknown. Perhaps a variant of fuss, with a notion of "hard to please."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper