1. Light down or fuzz, as on a young bird or on a dandelion or milkweed seed.
2. Something having a very light, soft, or frothy consistency or appearance: a fluff of meringue; a fluff of cloud.
3. Something of little substance or consequence, especially:
a. Light or superficial entertainment: The movie was just another bit of fluff from Hollywood.
b. Inflated or padded material: The report was mostly fluff, with little new information.
4. The parts of a junked car that are not metal and cannot be recycled.
5. Informal An error, especially in the delivery of lines, as by an actor or announcer.
v. fluffed, fluff·ing, fluffs
1. To make fluffy: fluff a pillow; a squirrel fluffing out its tail.
a. To ruin or mar by a mistake or blunder: They fluffed their chance to participate in the playoffs by losing their last three games.
b. To forget or botch (one's lines).
3. Vulgar Slang To cause (a man) to be sufficiently aroused so that he is able to have sexual intercourse, especially in a pornographic film.
1. To become fluffy.
2. Informal To make an error, especially to forget or botch one's lines.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.