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pouf1

[poof]
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noun
  1. a high headdress with the hair rolled in puffs, worn by women in the late 18th century.
  2. an arrangement of the hair over a pad; puff.
  3. a puff of material as an ornament on a dress or headdress.
  4. Also pouffe. a broad, backless, usually round, cushionlike seat, often large enough for several people.
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Origin of pouf1

From French, dating back to 1810–20; see origin at puff
Related formspoufed, pouffed, adjectivepouf·y, pouf·fy, adjective

pouf2

[poo f, poof]
noun British Slang: Extremely Disparaging and Offensive.
  1. poof2.
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

comforterbedspreadblanketpatchworkcoverdownpadpuffcoverletcounterpaneduveteiderdownpoufbatt

Examples from the Web for pouf

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • She snapped her fingers, and gave the Zerv equivalent of "pouf."

  • Her relatives joined the revolutionists, and pouf,—were blown out.

    Eve to the Rescue

    Ethel Hueston

  • You throw your apron over your head so that you can't see, and pouf!

  • The Emperor has gone to Metzeh piff, pouf, boum, where is your Bismarck then!

  • Wherever she goes she is the cynosure of all eyes, and then—Pouf!

    In Vanity Fair

    Eleanor Hoyt Brainerd


British Dictionary definitions for pouf

pouf

pouffe

noun
  1. a large solid cushion, usually cylindrical or cubic in shape, used as a seat
    1. a woman's hair style, fashionable esp in the 18th century, in which the hair is piled up in rolled puffs
    2. a pad set in the hair to make such puffs
  2. a stuffed pad worn under panniers
  3. (pʊf, puːf) British derogatory, slang less common spellings of poof
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Word Origin

C19: from French; see puff
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 pouf

n.

"style of elaborate female head-dress," 1817 (in reference to styles of c.1780), from French bouffer "to blow out, puff," probably of imitative origin. In dress-making, recorded from 1869; in reference to over-stuffed cushions, 1884. As a verb by 1882 (implied in pouffed).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper