baffle

verb
baf·​fle | \ ˈba-fəl How to pronounce baffle (audio) \
baffled; baffling\ ˈba-​f(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce baffling (audio) \

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 How to pronounce bafflement (audio) \ noun
baffler \ ˈba-​f(ə-​)lər How to pronounce baffler (audio) \ 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

Danech San, then a 23-year-old budding interior designer, recalled being baffled and entranced. Los Angeles Times, "Young filmmakers train a fresh lens on turbulent Cambodia," 27 Aug. 2019 We were baffled by our collective memory of Michael the loving, lovable child who was now shutting himself off from us. Margo Jefferson, Harper's magazine, "Lost Boy," 24 June 2019 President Trump’s mixed messages about a plan to help controversial Chinese telecom giant ZTE has baffled Washington. Dan Strumpf, WSJ, "ZTE Profits Sink, But Sales Are Recovering ‘Rapidly’ After U.S. Ban," 25 Oct. 2018 In the future, will we be similarly baffled by behaviors associated with today’s tech addiction? Marcie Merriman, Quartz at Work, "Will tech addiction mean the rise or demise of the Gen Z workforce?," 22 Aug. 2019 The amount of sea ice circling Antarctica has suddenly plunged from a record high to record lows, and scientists are baffled by the turn of events. Seth Borenstein, latimes.com, "After growing for decades, Antarctic sea ice suddenly plunged. Scientists are stumped," 1 July 2019 The brother of an American who fell seven stories from a balcony in Iraq said he is baffled by the fatal fall. Caroline Radnofsky, NBC News, "Family puzzled after American college lecturer's death in Iraq," 11 June 2019 Many Americans buying new cars these days are baffled by a torrent of new safety technology that vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. Nathan Bomey, USA TODAY, "US auto sales enjoy June increase: Ford, Fiat Chrysler up," 3 July 2018 However, international observers are baffled by the timing of the recent crackdown against female activists, coming just weeks before the driving ban is set to be lifted, who have called for more equality with men. Christopher Carbone, Fox News, "Saudi Arabia cracks down on feminists, branding them 'traitors' weeks before driving ban is lifted," 20 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The hole was resealed, and a metal baffle was installed to redirect any future leak away from the equipment. Michael E. Ruane, Washington Post, "The National Archives’ floating flood wall helped dodge disaster from epic rainfall," 11 July 2019 Non-catalytic stoves draw the woodsmoke through a series of baffles [Fig. Roy Berendson, Popular Mechanics, "The Ultimate Guide To Cutting and Splitting Firewood," 28 Sep. 2018 For those who are looking for pillow-top comfort instead of foam, this 3-inch bed topper is filled with two layers of 550 fill power down and feathers inside a cotton shell, while baffle box construction keeps the down clusters evenly distributed. Lexie Sachs, Good Housekeeping, "7 Top-Rated Mattress Toppers, According to Textile Pros," 19 Dec. 2018 Woodstoves come in two basic types: with and without a catalyst, which is a honeycomb-like baffle plated with precious metals (left in the image). Roy Berendson, Popular Mechanics, "The Ultimate Guide To Cutting and Splitting Firewood," 28 Sep. 2018 The standard way of dealing with this is to add baffles or suppressors on the end of the barrel to divert and slow down the gas. David Hambling, Popular Mechanics, "The Science of Russia's New Silent Sniper Rifle," 29 Aug. 2018 The speakers point downward, so a pair of baffles at the bottom called deflectors—one tuned to the frequencies emitted by each speaker—redirect the sound outward, in all directions, through the speaker grille. Kevin Dupzyk, Popular Mechanics, "What It Looks Like When You Take Apart an Amazon Echo," 24 Feb. 2017 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

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 2019

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)

technical : 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 How to pronounce baffle (audio) \
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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More from Merriam-Webster on baffle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with baffle

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for baffle

Spanish Central: Translation of baffle

Nglish: Translation of baffle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of baffle for Arabic Speakers

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