Thesaurus

bluff

adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms of bluff

(Entry 1 of 3)

bluff

noun

Synonyms of bluff (Entry 2 of 3)

a steep wall of rock, earth, or ice
  • fossils embedded in a stone bluff that date from the Jurassic period

Synonyms for bluff

Words Related to bluff

bluff

verb

Synonyms & Antonyms of bluff (Entry 3 of 3)

1 to cause to believe what is untrue
  • I bluffed the interviewer into believing that I could really speak French and thus would be the perfect person to serve in the newspaper's Paris bureau

Synonyms for bluff

Words Related to bluff

Phrases Synonymous with bluff

Near Antonyms for bluff

Antonyms for bluff

2 to present a false appearance of
  • the basketball player bluffed a shot, then passed instead

Synonyms for bluff

Words Related to bluff

Phrases Synonymous with bluff

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Frequently Asked Questions About bluff

How is the word bluff distinct from other similar adjectives?

Some common synonyms of bluff are blunt, brusque, crusty, curt, and gruff. While all these words mean "abrupt and unceremonious in speech and manner," bluff connotes good-natured outspokenness and unconventionality.

a bluff manner

When can blunt be used instead of bluff?

The meanings of blunt and bluff largely overlap; however, blunt suggests directness of expression in disregard of others' feelings.

a blunt appraisal

When is it sensible to use brusque instead of bluff?

While the synonyms brusque and bluff are close in meaning, brusque applies to a sharpness or ungraciousness.

a brusque response

When might crusty be a better fit than bluff?

Although the words crusty and bluff have much in common, crusty suggests a harsh or surly manner sometimes concealing an inner kindliness.

a crusty exterior

When would curt be a good substitute for bluff?

The words curt and bluff can be used in similar contexts, but curt implies disconcerting shortness or rude conciseness.

a curt command

When could gruff be used to replace bluff?

In some situations, the words gruff and bluff are roughly equivalent. However, gruff suggests a hoarse or husky speech which may imply bad temper but more often implies embarrassment or shyness.

puts on a gruff pose

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Learn More about bluff

Time Traveler for bluff Time Traveler

The first known use of bluff was in 1627

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Cite this Entry

“Bluff.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/bluff. Accessed 9 Mar. 2021.

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More from Merriam-Webster on bluff

Dictionary: Definition of bluff

Nglish: Translation of bluff for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bluff for Arabic Speakers

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