• To emit smoke, gas, etc., in puffs.
  • To pant.
  • To advertise.
  • To blow as an expression of scorn.
  • To swell with air; to be dilated or inflated.
  • To breathe in a swelling, inflated, or pompous manner; hence, to assume importance.
  • To drive with a puff, or with puffs.
  • To repel with words; to blow at contemptuously.
  • To cause to swell or dilate; to inflate.
  • To inflate with pride, flattery, self-esteem, etc.; often with up.
  • To praise with exaggeration; to flatter; to call public attention to by praises; to praise unduly.


  • From Middle English puff, puf, from Old English pyf, imitative. Cognate with Middle Low German puf, pof.
  • From Middle English puffen, from Old English pyffan. Compare Dutch puffen, German Low German puffen, German puffen, Danish puffe, Swedish puffa.

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