\ˈkwäf, ˈkwaf \
quaffed; quaffing; quaffs

Definition of quaff 

intransitive verb

: to drink deeply

transitive verb

: to drink (a beverage) deeply

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from quaff

quaff noun
quaffer noun

Quaff and Slug

Nowadays, quaff has an old-fashioned, literary sound to it. For more contemporary words that suggest drinking a lot of something, especially in big gulps and in large quantity, you might try drain, pound, or slug. If you are a daintier drinker, you might say that you prefer to sip, imbibe or partake in the beverage of your choice. Quaff is by no means the oldest of these terms—earliest evidence of it in use is from the early 1500s, whereas sip dates to the 14th century—but it is the only one with the mysterious "origin unknown" etymology.

Examples of quaff in a Sentence

We stopped at a bar and quaffed a few beers. after digging our car out of the snowdrift, we were ready to quaff some hot chocolate

Recent Examples on the Web

Our suggestion for handling this re-entry is to quaff a cup or three of stimulation. Ed Silverman, STAT, "Pharmalittle: CMS drops plan for Novartis drug; lawsuit offers fresh details on Purdue opioid marketing," 9 July 2018 Yet despite the billionaire backers quaffing champagne at the Hong Kong IPO, the company’s name remains virtually unknown in the U.S.–a major obstacle to Lei’s stated ambition to create a Jobsian company that impacts the world. Charlie Cambell/beijing, Time, "Lei Jun Wants to Be China’s Answer to Steve Jobs. But Trump’s Trade War Is Getting In His Way," 12 July 2018 On many Saturdays, general manager Stephanie Henry opens the Fado Irish Pub in Center City at 7 a.m. for a crush of screaming, quaffing soccer fans looking to catch live European soccer on the telly. Bob Fernandez, Philly.com, "Is Comcast making it hard to watch European soccer to help NBC? The beIN Sports network says yes," 6 June 2018 There is only one way to respond to such situations, and that is to fire up the coffee kettle and quaff a cup or three of stimulation. Ed Silverman, STAT, "Pharmalittle: Connecticut moves closer to pricing law; Philippines starts criminal probe into dengue vaccine," 14 May 2018 Cruise on over on your cruiser and quaff a pint of craft brew while nibbling on bruschetta. James Patrick Kelly, idahostatesman, "Caffe Luciano’s a welcomed addition to Garden City | Idaho Statesman," 22 Mar. 2018 Readers who choose the final four beers and ultimate winner will be entered into a raffle to quaff a pint with the Day Drinkers, Wheaton and me. Peter Rowe, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Sweet 16: Cast your votes for San Diego's best IPAs," 15 Mar. 2018 The fact that people are quaffing from bigger and bigger wine glasses may be more significant considering that the drink itself has been growing in popularity, particularly among millennials. Amanda Onion, Newsweek, "How We Drink: A Serving Size of Wine Is Now Seven Times Bigger Than 300 Years Ago," 14 Dec. 2017 The stylish pub concept is a comfy place to hangout while quaffing draft brews and digging into some inventive pub fare that follows the seasons closely. James Patrick Kelly, idahostatesman, "Where to dine in McCall during Winter Carnival," 18 Jan. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of quaff

1523, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for quaff

origin unknown

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about quaff

Listen to Our Podcast about quaff

Statistics for quaff

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for quaff

The first known use of quaff was in 1523

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for quaff



English Language Learners Definition of quaff

: to drink a large amount of (something) quickly

More from Merriam-Webster on quaff

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for quaff

Comments on quaff

What made you want to look up quaff? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a nest or breeding place

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Late Autumn 2018 Words of the Day Quiz

  • frosted-autumn-leaves
  • Which is a synonym of yahoo?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!