luff

noun
\ ˈləf How to pronounce luff (audio) \

Definition of luff

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the act of sailing a ship nearer the wind
2 : the forward edge of a fore-and-aft sail

luff

verb
luffed; luffing; luffs

Definition of luff (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to turn the head of a ship toward the wind

Examples of luff in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The luff along the edges, the abundance of wind along the reach of the river, the arch and tip of the boat in relation to the air and the water; a boy, one hand on his tiller, the other on the rope, ducking down but not far enough. David Means, Harper's Magazine, 23 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Smaller cranes, such as luffing or mobile cranes, are laid flat on the ground during a storm and do not pose a threat. Rene Rodriguez, miamiherald, 5 Sep. 2017

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

First Known Use of luff

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for luff

Noun

Middle English lof spar holding out the windward tack of a sail, weather side of a ship, from Anglo-French

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Time Traveler for luff

Time Traveler

The first known use of luff was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near luff

Lufbery circle

luff

luffa

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Cite this Entry

“Luff.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/luff. Accessed 2 Jul. 2022.

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