baffle

verb
baf·fle | \ ˈba-fəl \
baffled; baffling\ˈba-f(ə-)liŋ \

Definition of baffle 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to defeat or check (someone) by confusing or puzzling : to confuse or frustrate completely : disconcert Her behavior baffled her parents.

2 : to check or break the force or flow of by or as if by a baffle (see baffle entry 2) baffle the steam

baffle

noun

Definition of baffle (Entry 2 of 2)

: a device (such as a plate, wall, or screen) to deflect, check, or regulate flow or passage (as of a fluid, light, or sound)

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Other words from baffle

Verb

bafflement \ˈba-fəl-mənt \ noun
baffler \ˈba-f(ə-)lər \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for baffle

Synonyms: Verb

balk, beat, checkmate, discomfit, foil, frustrate, thwart

Antonyms: Verb

advance, cultivate, encourage, forward, foster, further, nurture, promote

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Choose the Right Synonym for baffle

Verb

frustrate, thwart, foil, baffle, balk mean to check or defeat another's plan or block achievement of a goal. frustrate implies making vain or ineffectual all efforts however vigorous or persistent. frustrated attempts at government reform thwart suggests frustration or checking by crossing or opposing. the army thwarted his attempt at a coup foil implies checking or defeating so as to discourage further effort. foiled by her parents, he stopped trying to see her baffle implies frustration by confusing or puzzling. baffled by the maze of rules and regulations balk suggests the interposing of obstacles or hindrances. officials felt that legal restrictions had balked their efforts to control crime

Examples of baffle in a Sentence

Verb

I was baffled by many of the scientific terms used in the article. the language barrier baffled everyone and discouraged us from attempting another teleconference

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

CBS Los Angeles reports the shooting happened early Friday morning at the Malibu Creek State Park and has baffled detectives. CBS News, "Father killed while camping with daughters at Malibu Creek State Park," 25 June 2018 The choice baffled the Internet and spawned a slew of memes about what the first lady, a former model, may have meant. Laurie Kellman, BostonGlobe.com, "Melania returns to US-Mexico border amid separation outcry," 28 June 2018 Many Kings fans and sports media seem baffled that Chris Webber has again been left out of the Hall. Michael Mcgough, sacbee, "Is Chris Webber the best player not in the Hall of Fame? Why some are crying snub | The Sacramento Bee," 31 Mar. 2018 What’s baffling about this uniformity is that goal celebrations are supposed to be the most creative and individualistic part of soccer. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, "The World Cup of Boring Celebrations," 13 July 2018 Not even Elisabeth Moss could sell June’s dizzying about-face, or justify the show’s insistence that her actions were badass, not baffling. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "A Maddening Season Finale for The Handmaid’s Tale," 11 July 2018 Sale, meanwhile, sliced through the Yankees’ lineup, using a fastball that at times registered 100 miles per hour and his sweeping slider to overpower and baffle the Yankee hitters. David Waldstein, New York Times, "Sonny Gray Is Battered by Red Sox, Emphasizing Yankees’ Need for Rotation Help," 30 June 2018 The fact that city officials would back the razing of a building so closely associated with its founder has many preservationists baffled. Andres Viglucci, miamiherald, "Famed for protecting historic buildings, this city wants to bulldoze one. For parking.," 29 June 2018 Several years ago, thieves began stealing Tide laundry detergent from stores across the country, thefts that initially baffled police. Kim Chatelain, NOLA.com, "Tide laundry detergent thieves sought by police on North Shore," 16 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The 20-denier outer fabric is pleasantly soft and quiet, and low-stretch baffles ensure a stable sleeping surface. Outside Online, "The Best Women’s Thru-Hiking Gear of 2018," 15 May 2018 Their thick bark and tall straight trunks — branchless for the first 150 to 200 feet — function like massive acoustic baffles, aided by a sound-damping carpet of dense duff. Robert Earle Howells, SFChronicle.com, "Should we hide the locations of Earth’s greatest trees?," 3 July 2018 The horizontal baffles create a stable, supportive sleeping surface, and foil panels stitched inside help hold warm air near your body, adding necessary nighttime warmth underneath you. Wes Siler, Outside Online, "Plan Your First Backpacking Trip," 13 June 2018 Keep in mind that your homemade baffle will need to be smooth and wide so the squirrels can’t get a grip on it or jump over it. Jean Nick, Good Housekeeping, "8 Ways To Keep Squirrels Away From Your Bird Feeders," 20 June 2017 From there the plot bends and baffles in ways that I am neither obliged nor able to summarize. Justin Chang, latimes.com, "Cannes delivers a triumph with Lee Chang-dong’s slow-‘Burning’ masterwork," 18 May 2018 Inspired by Ettore Sottsass' famed Italian design firm the Memphis Group, Enoteca Nostrana's front door opens to a riot of color, with indigo sound baffles, aquamarine chairs and peachy pink walls. Michael Russell, OregonLive.com, "Nostrana chef Cathy Whims is opening a Euro-style wine bar, and it's gorgeous," 5 Apr. 2018 Then mount a baffle on a pole or chain to block access. John Kelly, Washington Post, "Meet the D.C. man who wrote the book on defeating birdseed-stealing squirrels," 15 Apr. 2018 In traditional jackets, there are cold spots wherever there are baffles or quilt lines are sewn into the jacket and no down can live. Brent Rose, Popular Mechanics, "The Depuffening of the Down Jacket," 24 Jan. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'baffle.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of baffle

Verb

1675, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1881, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for baffle

Verb

probably alteration of Middle English (Scots) bawchillen to denounce, discredit publicly

Noun

noun derivative of baffle entry 1

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Statistics for baffle

Last Updated

13 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for baffle

The first known use of baffle was in 1675

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More Definitions for baffle

baffle

verb

English Language Learners Definition of baffle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to confuse (someone) completely

baffle

noun

English Language Learners Definition of baffle (Entry 2 of 2)

: a device (such as a wall or screen) that is used to control the flow of something (such as a fluid, light, or sound)

baffle

verb
baf·fle | \ ˈba-fəl \
baffled; baffling\ˈba-fə-liŋ, ˈba-fliŋ \

Kids Definition of baffle

: to completely confuse The instructions baffled us.

Other words from baffle

baffled adjective

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Comments on baffle

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