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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
puff
I.verb
COLLOCATIONS FROM OTHER ENTRIES
a puff of smoke (=a small amount that comes quickly from something)
▪ There was a puff of white smoke from the man's gun.
powder puff
puff pastry
puffed up
▪ I was so puffed up with my own importance in those days.
COLLOCATIONS FROM CORPUS
■ ADVERB
away
▪ Regan gazed abstractedly up at the ceiling, puffing away at his cigar.
▪ The rice cooker puffs away many nights, with jasmine rice scenting the air.
▪ He just goes on past me, puffing away and shoving this trolley thing in front of him.
▪ Winnie whips out a stogie and starts puffing away, blowing smoke over to your table.
▪ Three youths piled into it simultaneously, puffing away in my face.
▪ Gary and I laughed, but Nate just puffed away on his pipe.
▪ Of course she didn't smoke, she thought, watching them lighting up and puffing away.
▪ For 35 years, Richard Gourlain has puffed away on pungent unfiltered Gauloises.
out
▪ Here we have a co-production of mini-series ambitions, but without the necessary budget or pomposity to puff out to epic proportions.
▪ Under her starched cap the dyed dry hair was puffed out.
▪ Shot after shot puffs out of the barrel, knocking dust all around the buck.
▪ Birdsong drifted through the open window and a breeze puffed out the curtains.
▪ The father kept his cheeks puffed out because the third oldest burst into giggles every time she looked over at him.
up
▪ The males responded by puffing up their chests and circling slowly towards each other.
▪ And within the field, status comes from puffing up racial bragging points.
▪ Her legs look puffed up, rubbery, but they keep moving.
▪ They lack the sharp spines but are covered with fine prickles that are evident when the puffer puffs up.
▪ Subsequently, the soap became further puffed up.
▪ The guy was all bristly and red and puffed up, in fatigue pants and a brown shirt.
▪ As they obeyed, Mungo could see that the sorcerer's apprentice was a toad, puffed up with fear or pride.
▪ Ashby recalls his skin puffed up.
■ NOUN
chest
▪ The males responded by puffing up their chests and circling slowly towards each other.
▪ It puffed its chest, raised its upper body, and threw back the head in a gesture of defiance.
▪ He puffed up his chest like an exotic bird engaged in a courtship dance.
▪ At the fence, he suddenly sucked his stomach in and puffed his chest out.
cigar
▪ Regan gazed abstractedly up at the ceiling, puffing away at his cigar.
▪ Trumka just looked at me and puffed his cigar.
▪ He was puffing a fat cigar, the smoke concealing his facial features.
pipe
▪ Gary and I laughed, but Nate just puffed away on his pipe.
▪ He squatted beside us and puffed loudly on his pipe.
▪ Nate looked proud, puffing on his pipe as he told us about his adventure.
smoke
▪ Winnie whips out a stogie and starts puffing away, blowing smoke over to your table.
▪ Thankfully he was too dim to perceive the effect he had on his beloved and puffed smoke lovingly at every sourness.
▪ When they arrived at the fire, there were no flames visible, just puffs of smoke.
■ VERB
huff
▪ After all their huffing and puffing, every incumbent was desperate to claim some achievement.
▪ Now there's to be a schools painting competition about the bulldozers that can huff and puff and pull the house down.
▪ He ascends, huffing and puffing, stopping at each landing.
▪ Brian, furious, would huff and puff as Mazzin unceremoniously threw him back down on his bed.
▪ It was a huffing and puffing.
▪ People such as Safire huffed and puffed about her futures-trading profits, but the matter faded from view.
▪ Before long he was huffing and puffing, his dark neck thrust out at a sharp angle.
EXAMPLES FROM OTHER ENTRIES
▪ ""Sorry I'm so late Maxie,'' he said, puffing breathlessly.
▪ factory chimneys puffing smoke
▪ You could see her puffing as she carried the heavy washing basket.
EXAMPLES FROM CORPUS
▪ Birdsong drifted through the open window and a breeze puffed out the curtains.
▪ Diminutive body, pink puffed sleeves, dress a criss-cross of black stripes.
▪ Eventually, puffing and panting, he arrived at the security gate.
▪ He just goes on past me, puffing away and shoving this trolley thing in front of him.
▪ It was a huffing and puffing.
▪ People such as Safire huffed and puffed about her futures-trading profits, but the matter faded from view.
▪ The father kept his cheeks puffed out because the third oldest burst into giggles every time she looked over at him.
▪ With a cry of rage, he puffed on his much-chewed stogie and fired at us.
II.noun
COLLOCATIONS FROM CORPUS
■ ADJECTIVE
cream
▪ Makes about 19 cream puffs.&038;.
▪ Add a little cream puff goodie for dessert and no one will be late for dinner.
■ NOUN
pastry
▪ She kneaded me, all right, she wanted me transformed into puff pastry just like Daddy.
▪ Roll out puff pastry sheet to enlarge it to a 10-inch square.
▪ Lumps of steak pie; livid red meat, clammy puff pastry.
▪ Grand Finale: A stunning Napoleon made with layers of puff pastry, hazelnut mousse, caramelized apples and muscat zabaglione.
▪ Escargot in puff pastry, Maine lobster soup and a 10-ounce prime filet mignon are among the swanky choices.
▪ Cut the puff pastry into 4 equal 5-inch squares.
powder
▪ Always use a clean powder puff.
▪ His second serve is no longer a powder puff.
▪ Tip a little loose powder into the palm of your hand and pat the powder puff into it.
■ VERB
take
▪ He took several puffs and Galvone was careful to keep quiet.
▪ He took another puff and began reading the names of the crews and their ship numbers.
▪ He lit his Havana, took a deep satisfying puff.
▪ Cyril sat on the dock and took a long puff.
▪ I take one puff when offered.
▪ He took such a long puff on his cigarette that he began to cough, his throat burning.
▪ With a flick he lit his cigarette and took a puff.
PHRASES FROM OTHER ENTRIES
huff and puff
▪ A couple of pudgy joggers were huffing and puffing along the path.
▪ After all their huffing and puffing, every incumbent was desperate to claim some achievement.
▪ Before long he was huffing and puffing, his dark neck thrust out at a sharp angle.
▪ Brian, furious, would huff and puff as Mazzin unceremoniously threw him back down on his bed.
▪ But however the warning was given, the board, huff and puff as it might, will have to pay attention.
▪ He huffed and puffed-but failed to shake the growing edifice of evidence stacked up against him.
▪ He ascends, huffing and puffing, stopping at each landing.
▪ It was a huffing and puffing.
▪ Now there's to be a schools painting competition about the bulldozers that can huff and puff and pull the house down.
EXAMPLES FROM CORPUS
▪ And yesterday the reaction from most was to blow a puff of smoke into the law's face.
▪ At about a kilometre's range the whales' blow looked like small globular puffs of steam rising off the sea surface.
▪ In a healthy larynx, the chords vibrate gently, releasing puffs of air that are transformed into the voice.
▪ It went to the ceiling in corpulent puffs.
▪ Now and again there was a tiny puff of smoke and the smack of a hand-grenade or a burst of machine-gun fire.
▪ Roll out puff pastry sheet to enlarge it to a 10-inch square.
▪ The breezes are like a puff of air on a pinwheel.
▪ We aimed at the puffs of smoke we saw rising in front and on the left of us.
The Collaborative International Dictionary
puff

Puffball \Puff"ball`\, n. (Bot.) A kind of ball-shaped fungus ( Lycoperdon giganteum, and other species of the same genus) full of dustlike spores when ripe; -- called also bullfist, bullfice, puckfist, puff, and puffin.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary
puff

c.1200, perhaps Old English, puf, puffe "short, quick blast; act of puffing," from puff (v.). Meaning "type of light pastry" is recorded from late 14c.; that of "small pad for applying powder to skin or hair" is from 1650s. Figurative sense of "flattery, inflated praise" is first recorded 1732. Derogatory use for "homosexual male" is recorded by 1902.

puff

Old English pyffan "to blow with the mouth," of imitative origin. Meaning "pant, breathe hard and fast" is from late 14c. Used of small swellings and round protuberances since 1530s. Transitive figurative sense of "exalt" is from 1530s; shading by early 18c. into meaning "praise with self-interest." Related: Puffed; puffing.

Wiktionary
puff

n. 1 (context countable English) A sharp exhalation of a small amount of breath through the mouth. 2 (context uncountable English) The ability to breathe easily while exerting oneself. 3 (context countable English) A small quantity of gas or smoke in the air. 4 (context informal countable English) An act of inhale smoke from a cigarette, cigar or pipe. 5 (context countable English) A flamboyant or alluring statement about an object's quality. 6 (context dated slang English) A puffer, one who is employed by the owner or seller of goods sold at auction to bid up the price; an act or scam of that type. 7 A puffball. 8 A powder puff. 9 (context uncountable slang English) The drug cannabis. 10 (context countable English) A light cake filled with cream, cream cheese, etc. 11 (context derogatory slang British particularly northern UK English) a homosexual; a poof 12 (context slang dated UK English) life vb. 1 (context intransitive English) To emit smoke, gas, etc., in puffs. 2 (context intransitive English) To pant. 3 (context transitive archaic English) To advertise. 4 To blow as an expression of scorn. 5 To swell with air; to be dilated or inflated. 6 To breathe in a swelling, inflated, or pompous manner; hence, to assume importance. 7 To drive with a puff, or with puffs. 8 To repel with words; to blow at contemptuously. 9 To cause to swell or dilate; to inflate. 10 To inflate with pride, flattery, self-esteem, etc.; often with ''up''. 11 To praise with exaggeration; to flatter; to call public attention to by praises; to praise unduly.

WordNet
puff

adj. gathered for protruding fullness; "puff sleeves" [syn: puffed]

puff
  1. n. a short light gust of air [syn: puff of air, whiff]

  2. a light inflated pastry or puff shell

  3. exaggerated praise (as for promotional purposes)

  4. bedding made of two layers of cloth filled with stuffing and stitched together [syn: quilt, comforter]

  5. a soft spherical object made from fluffy fibers; for applying powder to the skin [syn: powderpuff]

  6. thick cushion used as a seat [syn: ottoman, pouf, pouffe, hassock]

  7. a slow inhalation (as of tobacco smoke); "he took a puff on his pipe"; "he took a drag on his cigarette and expelled the smoke slowly" [syn: drag, pull]

  8. forceful exhalation through the nose or mouth; "he gave his nose a loud blow"; "he blew out all the candles with a single puff" [syn: blow]

puff
  1. v. smoke and exhale strongly; "puff a cigar"; "whiff a pipe" [syn: whiff]

  2. suck in or take (air); "draw a deep breath"; "draw on a cigarette" [syn: drag, draw]

  3. breathe noisily, as when one is exhausted; "The runners reached the finish line, panting heavily" [syn: pant, gasp, heave]

  4. make proud or conceited; "The sudden fame puffed her ego"

  5. praise extravagantly; "The critics puffed up this Broadway production" [syn: puff up]

  6. speak in a blustering or scornful manner; "A puffing kind of man"

  7. to swell or cause to enlarge, "Her faced puffed up from the drugs" [syn: puff up, blow up, puff out]

  8. blow hard and loudly; "he huffed and puffed as he made his way up the mountain" [syn: huff, chuff]

Wikipedia
Puff

Puff may refer to:

Usage examples of "puff".

The signal gun aboard Endymion sent out a puff of smoke and a series of flags broke out at the mast-head.

But the storm came up sharper than ever that evening, and even had he wished to, Roy would have found it impossible to handle the aeroplane alone in the heavy wind that came now in puffs and now in a steady gale.

A single faint whiff of this, borne to Donald, on a puff of the night wind, gave him the very knowledge he wanted, and he at once began to move with the same caution that he had observed on the previous evening while creeping up to the fire-lighted circles of the victorious Wyandots.

Oncus sat cross-legged on the main deck under the awning, between Yama and Captain Lorquital, who lay on her side, propped by bolsters and puffing calmly on her pipe.

They cum in krowds to my Show and then axt me ten sents a lines for Puffs.

Its rear exuded puffs of white, and the craft began to drop more rapidly, more confidently, toward the world below, a world of all adamantine blue-white, a great azurite globe laced with a delicate matrix of cloud.

Ralph Bales let the word float through the room like a puff of cigarette smoke.

There, in that moribund, ancient town, wrapped in its siesta, flagellated with heat, deserted, ignored, baking in a noon-day silence, these two strange men, the one a poet by nature, the other by training, both out of tune with their world, dreamers, introspective, morbid, lost and unfamiliar at that end-of-the-century time, searching for a sign, groping and baffled amidst the perplexing obscurity of the Delusion, sat over empty wine glasses, silent with the pervading silence that surrounded them, hearing only the cooing of doves and the drone of bees, the quiet so profound, that at length they could plainly distinguish at intervals the puffing and coughing of a locomotive switching cars in the station yard of Bonneville.

There was old Bick cursing for all he was worth, and a little red-faced buffer puffing out his cheeks in an armchair.

I told him about the gardener and the Black and Tans and the bogmen and their bony arses and being locked in the boilerhouse and puffing fags and talking to the saints and St Teresa.

Came clanks, rattles, splashes, yells, puffing of steam, creaking turns of the windlass, and a frenzy of running around, and a great cadenza of obscenity.

But he had scarcely emitted three puffs before the piping voice of Arabella Cadge was again wafted to his ears.

Ridiculous rumors whispered across a café table and set adrift in the clouded brain of a Turkish policeman lazily puffing hashish, dimly trying to focus his eyes on the crotch of a serving-boy across the way.

Two wings extended out toward the street, creating a garden-like area in the center that was planted with pink and gray caladium, banks of philodendrons and elephant ears, climbing roses, banana trees, bamboo, crepe myrtle and azaleas, whose blooms puffed in the wind and tumbled on the grass.

The hills moved slowly, filling the evening air with explosive hisses and puffs, the exhalations of a colossal cetacean calliope.