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Bluff   Listen
noun
Bluff  n.  
1.
A high, steep bank, as by a river or the sea, or beside a ravine or plain; a cliff with a broad face. "Beach, bluff, and wave, adieu."
2.
An act of bluffing; an expression of self-confidence for the purpose of intimidation; braggadocio; as, that is only bluff, or a bluff.
3.
A game at cards; poker. (U.S.)






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Bluff" Quotes from Famous Books



... little ones play blind-man's-bluff, or hunt-the-slipper. Sometimes Jack Frost steals down from the North, and pinches them. But he does not stay long. He likes his ...
— The Nursery, No. 109, January, 1876, Vol. XIX. - A Monthly Magazine for Youngest Readers • Unknown

... she had progressed about two miles up the bight, while Dick had hugged the eastern shore of the island of Baru as closely as the depth of water would permit; and when at length the wind failed he took advantage of its last expiring breath to run the boat in behind a small rocky, tree-crowned bluff, where she was not only completely hidden from sight, but where her crew enjoyed the further advantage of being sheltered from the too ardent rays of the sun. Here, having lowered their sails and ...
— Two Gallant Sons of Devon - A Tale of the Days of Queen Bess • Harry Collingwood

... antiquarians. They may be found, almost all of them, in Professor Rafn's "Antiquitates Americanae." The action in them stands out often so clear and dramatic, that the internal evidence of historic truth is irresistible. Thorvald, who, when he saw what seems to be, they say, the bluff head of Alderton at the south-east end of Boston Bay, said, "Here should I like to dwell," and, shot by an Esquimaux arrow, bade bury him on that place, with a cross at his head and a cross at his feet, ...
— Historical Lectures and Essays • Charles Kingsley

... The battle of Ball's Bluff resulted disastrously to the Union forces, and two thousand men were mostly driven into the Potomac, some drowned and others shot. Colonel Baker, United States ...
— Comic History of the United States • Bill Nye

... swept the prairie, which was now bare of snow. Larry rode down the trail that led through the Cedar Bluff. He was freely sprinkled with mire, for spring had come suddenly, and the frost-bleached sod was soft with the thaw; and when he pulled up on the wooden bridge to wait until Breckenridge, who appeared ...
— The Cattle-Baron's Daughter • Harold Bindloss

... spring of 1830 the roving spirit of Thomas Lincoln felt the call of the West and they set out for Illinois. John Hanks met them five miles northwest of Decatur in Macon County, where on a bluff overlooking the muddy Sangamon they built a cabin, split rails, fenced fifteen acres and broke the prairie. Young Lincoln was twenty-one and free, but he remained at home during the summer, helping ...
— Life of Abraham Lincoln - Little Blue Book Ten Cent Pocket Series No. 324 • John Hugh Bowers

... then in the black waters of the Rio Negro, near rather a high bluff covered with cecropias with buds of reddish-brown, and palisaded with stiff-stalked reeds called "froxas," of which the Indians make some ...
— Eight Hundred Leagues on the Amazon • Jules Verne

... South Mountain, or Shiloh, or Ball's Bluff, or Gettysburg, and I ask you if there is any sadder sight than a battle-field after the guns have stopped firing? I walked across the field of Antietam just after the conflict. The scene was so sickening I shall not describe it. Every valuable thing had been taken from the bodies ...
— New Tabernacle Sermons • Thomas De Witt Talmage

... hold the glance of old and young. Unlike the natives she was tall and fair; masses of golden hair encircled her oval face and clustered over her blue eyes. Who was she? Whence came she? None could answer. By degrees some of the boldest of the youths approached, but their bluff manners seemed to displease her; though unaccustomed to rebuffs they retired. One, however, among them fared differently. Jean Letocq, a member of the family to which the hero belonged who near this very spot discovered the sleeping troops of the Grand Sarrazin, ...
— The Forest of Vazon - A Guernsey Legend Of The Eighth Century • Anonymous

... no authority. Do you think you can bluff us because we are young? You will find you have ...
— Frank Merriwell's Cruise • Burt L. Standish

... possession, my father was obliged to accept. From that time forward his success met with no check. By no means a master of his art, Sir John supplied with assurance what he lacked in knowledge, and atoned for his mistakes by the readiness of a bluff and old-fashioned sympathy ...
— Doctor Therne • H. Rider Haggard

... had everything their own way. From the right and the left their gray masses converged into the gap, pushed through, and then, spreading, turned our men out of the works so hardly held against the attack in their front. From our viewpoint on the bluff we could mark the constant widening of the gap, the steady encroachment of that blazing and smoking mass against its ...
— The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce • Ambrose Bierce

... Philadelphia, the coal dealer; Henry Tanner, the artist; John W. Terry, foreman of the iron and fitting department of the Chicago West Division Street Car Company; J. D. Baltimore, engineer, machinist, and inventor, of Washington, D. C.; Wiley Jones, of Pine Bluff, Arkansas, the owner of a street car railroad, race track and park; Richard Hancock, foreman of the pattern shops of the Eagle Works and Manufacturing Company, and draughtsman; John Beack, the inventor, whose inventions are ...
— Twentieth Century Negro Literature - Or, A Cyclopedia of Thought on the Vital Topics Relating - to the American Negro • Various

... de Silver Bluff Baptist Church, and I been goin' to Sunday School dar nearly ever since I can 'member. You know dey say dat's de oldest Nigger church in de country. At fust a white man come from Savannah and de church wuz built for his family and dey slaves. Later dere ...
— Slave Narratives: A Folk History of Slavery in the United States From Interviews with Former Slaves - Georgia Narratives, Part 3 • Works Projects Administration

... her and demanded tea, and asked her to state a case. "Bit thick on the old man, isn't it?" said Roddy, who had developed a bluff, straightforward style in the ...
— Ann Veronica • H. G. Wells

... hellish!" Somers protested presently, as Seth remained silent, gazing hard at a rather large bluff on the river bank, some three hundred yards ahead. Then he added bitterly, "But it ain't no use. We're too late. The fire's finished everything. Maybe we'll find their bodies. I ...
— The Watchers of the Plains - A Tale of the Western Prairies • Ridgewell Cullum

... grumbled Willett, who played bluff fathers in musical comedy. "A few years ago, they would have been scared to death of putting on a show with a crook as hero. Now, it seems to me the public doesn't want anything else. Not that they know what they DO want," ...
— The Intrusion of Jimmy • P. G. Wodehouse

... the assailing tempest's strength and fury. The lightning now came not only in ragged blazes and long ripping lines of light, but in bursts and shocks, and in bomb-like balls, exploding with elemental detonations. Balls of this tense surcharged essence rolled out over the comb of the bluff, fell upon the shadows of the water, and seemed to bound from crest to white-capped crest, till at last they split and burst asunder like some ominous missiles from engines of wrath ...
— The Mississippi Bubble • Emerson Hough

... you look'd so bluff, But now I'll secret keep your stuff; For know, prostration is ...
— Poems (Volume II.) • Jonathan Swift

... kitchen after depositing the pitchfork and its burden by the shed. Grateful Mrs. Alec cried and held little David closer when Priscilla, fortified by Hannah's cider, told the story. Alec, who came in a few minutes later, was grateful, too, in his bluff Scotch way. The snake, he said, was a whopper. He had rarely seen a larger, and Miss Priscilla was a trump—the very bravest ...
— Virginia of Elk Creek Valley • Mary Ellen Chase

... the boat to Bluff Point; and the shore was so elevated here, that the skipper stood farther out into the lake so that he might not lose the wind. The Goldwing behaved so well, that Dory was beginning to have a great deal of confidence in her, so that he ...
— All Adrift - or The Goldwing Club • Oliver Optic

... order to form the Lake of Thun. Near the west end of that lake it receives on the left the Kander, which has just before been joined by the Simme; on flowing out of the lake it passes Thun, and then circles the lofty bluff on which the town of Bern is built. It soon changes its north-westerly for a due westerly direction, but after receiving the Saane or Sarine (left) turns N. till near Aarberg its stream is diverted W. by the Hagneck Canal into ...
— Project Gutenberg Encyclopedia

... the batteries on the James River, to watch the progress made. Upon one occasion Vincent accompanied his mother and sisters, and a party of ladies and gentlemen from the neighboring plantations, to Drury's Bluff, where an intrenched position named Fort Darling had been erected, and preparations made to sink vessels across the river, and close it against the advance of the enemy's fleet, should any misfortune happen ...
— With Lee in Virginia - A Story of the American Civil War • G. A. Henty

... ridge she rode out to the edge and made the peace-sign to Luck as a signal that she was ready to do his bidding. Incidentally, while she held her hand high over her head, her eyes swept keenly the bowlder-strewn bluff beneath her. A little to one side was a narrow backbone of smoother soil than the rest, and here were printed deep the marks of Jean's horse. Even there it was steep, and there was a bank, down there by the big flat rock which Jean had mentioned. Annie-Many-Ponies ...
— The Heritage of the Sioux • B.M. Bower

... Mr. Reginald Middleheath, the eminent criminal counsel, who depended as much upon his portly imposing stage presence to bluff juries into an acquittal as upon his legal attainments, which were also considerable. Mr. Middleheath's cardinal article of legal faith was that all juries were fools, and should be treated as such, because ...
— The Shrieking Pit • Arthur J. Rees

... East Range, the Stirling. The wind has changed again to the south-east. I have named this creek the Stirling, after the Honourable Edward Stirling, M.L.C. Followed it into the range on the same course towards a bluff, where I think I shall find an easy crossing. At one mile from the camp the hills commenced on the south-east side of the creek, but on the north-west side they commenced three miles further back. There was abundance of water in the creek for thirteen miles; at ten miles ...
— Explorations in Australia, The Journals of John McDouall Stuart • John McDouall Stuart

... going to say I thought it might be some sort of an improvement on a moving picture camera," Joe answered. "This may be only a bluff of his—wanting to learn how to take moving pictures. He may know how all along, and only be working on a certain improvement that he can't perfect until he gets just the right conditions. That's what ...
— The Moving Picture Boys at Panama - Stirring Adventures Along the Great Canal • Victor Appleton

... Digby runs close to the water. The bluff is crowned by a grassy sward and a row of well-grown trees, with a driveway between these and the buildings ...
— Dorothy's Travels • Evelyn Raymond

... "Bluff, with nothing behind it. You don't take me that way," he said. "Now I'll put my cards right down in front of you. Alton is not a fool, and you couldn't tell him anything he doesn't know already. The trouble is, he can prove nothing. He has a tolerably short temper, and ...
— Alton of Somasco • Harold Bindloss

... in, big and bluff and easy-going. "Hittin' the trail, boys? Good enough. Hope you find the thieves. If you do, play yore cards close. They're treacherous devils. Don't take no chances with 'em. I left an order at the store for you to draw on me for another pair of boots ...
— Gunsight Pass - How Oil Came to the Cattle Country and Brought a New West • William MacLeod Raine

... shouted Strong, thrusting his head in at the tent; and we all cheered and waved our caps like mad. You see, Big Bethel and Bull Run and Ball's Bluff (the Bloody B's, as we used to call them,) hadn't ...
— Modern Prose And Poetry; For Secondary Schools - Edited With Notes, Study Helps, And Reading Lists • Various

... memoirs that the moment Castlereagh stood up and adjusted his waistcoat, there was a thrill in the House of Commons, and his followers bellowed their exultation and delight. In a more recent day, Lord Althorpe was able to bear down the hostility of some of the most powerful orators of his time by a bluff manliness which no rhetoric could withstand. And so also with Jimmy—his sheer audacity carries him along the slow, dull, inept, muddy ...
— Sketches In The House (1893) • T. P. O'Connor

... a high bluff, covered with wood, contiguous to the college, I observed a monument or obelisk, which I ascertained to have been erected to the memory of Kosciusko, a Polish patriot, who took a prominent part in the annihilation of British rule in America. It had a very picturesque ...
— An Englishman's Travels in America - His Observations Of Life And Manners In The Free And Slave States • John Benwell

... on the bluff overlooking Williamsport. Imboden's artillery had the exact range and were pouring shell into the position where the brigade was trying ...
— Personal Recollections of a Cavalryman - With Custer's Michigan Cavalry Brigade in the Civil War • J. H. (James Harvey) Kidd

... letters, and was again interrupted, this time by Markham, Breede's confidential secretary. Markham's approach to Bean was emphatically footed, as that of a man unable to imagine ice being thin under his feet. He was bluff and open, where Tully lurked behind his "not impossibles." He was even jovial now. He smiled down ...
— Bunker Bean • Harry Leon Wilson

... top of the bluff and he made her sit down to rest. A pale moon suffused the country, and in that stage set to lowered lights her pallor was accented. From the colorless face shadowy, troubled eyes spoke the misery through which she was passing. The man divined that her ...
— Brand Blotters • William MacLeod Raine

... atmosphere of suspense the long afternoon dragged into evening. Every effort to free the vessel had been tried, but to no avail. Evening mess was served amid an oppressive silence varied only by the valiant efforts of bluff Bill Witt to stir a bit of confidence in his mates. Another and final effort to get away was to be tried at midnight with high tide. And then—-if nothing availed—-the boys knew full well that with the morning Lieutenant McClure would resort to ...
— The Brighton Boys with the Submarine Fleet • James R. Driscoll

... chalk. The only sort of person I could think of who would carry a piece of chalk loose in his pocket and use a blue pencil continuously was a schoolmaster. So I stated definitely—there's nothing like bluff—that the knife belonged to the left-handed man, who quite obviously had red hair, who appeared to wear the insignia of the married state, and who—again according to the law of averages—had at least one child. I naturally ...
— The Mystery of the Green Ray • William Le Queux

... for four days we were free of fatigues, were inspected by the new G.O.C. of the Division, Major-General Fanshawe, enjoyed the sun, and endured a violent thunderstorm. Thence returning to the wood we sampled White Lodge, the Warwick's home under the steep wooded bluff of Hill 63, where the rats made merry among the dirt and unburied food; also La Plus Douce, a pastoral but dangerous spot, where the Douve flowed muddily amidst neglected water-meadows stretching along to Wulverghem with its battered church tower ...
— The War Service of the 1/4 Royal Berkshire Regiment (T. F.) • Charles Robert Mowbray Fraser Cruttwell

... below Vicksburg, to the south. With the aid of the fleet, which ran the batteries successfully, he moved his army down the west bank until he reached a point beyond the possibility of attack, while a diversion by Sherman at Haines' Bluff, above Vicksburg, kept Pemberton in his fortifications. On April 26, Grant began to move his men over the river and landed them at Bruinsburg. "When this was effected," he writes, "I felt a degree of relief scarcely ...
— Hero Tales From American History • Henry Cabot Lodge, and Theodore Roosevelt

... insist upon it. Well, you know the feeling of an officer up against mutiny. No matter what the provocation, he must put the mutiny down; so, when the men came aft, they found me with the mate, and dead against them. We called their bluff, drove them forward at the muzzles of our guns, and promised them relief from all work except handling sail if they would take the ship to Queenstown. They agreed, because they could not do anything else, and the mutiny was over. But my conscience bothered me later on; for ...
— The Grain Ship • Morgan Robertson

... also the gallery of Bronzes: it contains, among other master-pieces, the aerial Mercury of John of Bologna, of which we see such a multiplicity of copies. There is a conceit in perching him upon the bluff cheeks of a little Eolus: but what exquisite lightness in the figure!—how it mounts, how it floats, disdaining the earth! On leaving the gallery, I sauntered about; visited some churches, and then returned home depressed and wearied: and in this melancholy ...
— The Diary of an Ennuyee • Anna Brownell Jameson

... his new life was the friendship of the bluff, cantankerous, but kind-hearted contractor, his sunny daughter, the manly foreman, and the talkative Murphy. Of Tressa he had so many glowing things to write in his letters to his wife that Helen threatened ...
— The Return of Blue Pete • Luke Allan

... be elevated several feet above the level of the sea,—at one end having a bold bluff-like termination, at the other shelving off in a gentle ...
— The Ocean Waifs - A Story of Adventure on Land and Sea • Mayne Reid

... manner of questions, and so did Inspector Date; but all attempts to incriminate Quass were vain. He was bluff and straightforward, and told—so far as could be judged—everything he knew. There was nothing for it but to dismiss him, and Eliza Flight was ...
— The Green Mummy • Fergus Hume

... the savages from straying from the reservation. We weren't under instructions to riddle them if they attempted to pass our guard posts, but were authorized to tickle them up to any reasonable extent, short of maiming them, with our bayonets, if any of them attempted to bluff past us. Well, the men of my troop had all colors of trouble while on guard in holding the savages in. The Ogalallas would hardly pay any attention to the white sentries of the chain guard, and when they wanted to pass beyond the guard limits ...
— History of Negro Soldiers in the Spanish-American War, and Other Items of Interest • Edward A. Johnson

... she carried she lay over until her lee rail was almost under water when the heavy squalls swooped down on her from the cliffs. The rest of the squadron was keeping some distance out, presenting a fine sight as the ships lay over, sending the spray flying high into the air from their bluff bows, and plunging deeply into ...
— When London Burned • G. A. Henty

... and refers to a wide stretch of woodland once included in the great Morfe Forest; and ford to an adjoining passage of the river—one, half a mile higher up, being still called Danes' Ford. On a bluff headland, rising perpendicularly 100 feet above the Severn, close by, the hardy Northerners, who thus left their name in connection with the Severn, established themselves in 896, when driven by Alfred from the Thames; and on the same projecting rock, defended on the land side by a trench cut in ...
— Handbook to the Severn Valley Railway - Illustrative and Descriptive of Places along the Line from - Worcester to Shrewsbury • J. Randall

... girl beginning to relent, but still enjoying the success of her coup. "But really that is a small leap for a man. My driver, I believe—" Her face suddenly lighted with a new inspiration. Hastily she walked to the top of the bluff. "McCall," she cried. "Will you come ...
— Prince or Chauffeur? - A Story of Newport • Lawrence Perry

... Castle "If"—If pigs had wings, If wishes horses were, If, rather more substantial things, My Castles in the air; If balances but grew on Banks, If Brokers hated "bluff;" If Editors refrained from thanks And ...
— Punch, Or The London Charivari, Vol. 103, Sep. 24, 1892 • Various

... to disintegrate had been a bluff. Would the attorney general have dared disintegrate a ship with even a Junior E on board? Maybe it had been just a threat of the local police, one they ...
— Eight Keys to Eden • Mark Irvin Clifton

... was almost ubiquitous. Here, there, wherever the mirth was loudest, there the form of the jovial baron was sure to be found. Old knights and equally elderly dames congregated together in the capacious oriel windows, and, with the tapestry curtains drawn aside, talked of the good old times of "Bluff King Hal," and pointed out with pride of superiority of their own happy age to these degenerate days. Middle-aged matrons sat proudly watching their offspring as they flitted to and fro, and noted with much satisfaction ...
— Heiress of Haddon • William E. Doubleday

... course he had adopted, the party and their adventurous leader on the 3rd of August, at 11 o'clock a.m., rounded a high bluff cape, which they called after the lady of Sir John Henry Pelly, Bart., Governor of the Hudson's Bay Company. It is situated in latitude 67 deg. 28' 00" north; longitude, by ...
— The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.III. - From George III. to Victoria • E. Farr and E. H. Nolan

... see why it's a bluff," said Susan hardily, back at her own desk, and turning her light on, full above her bright, innocent face. "I intended to wear my grandfather's gray uniform and my aunt's widow's veil to make an impression on him, and you ...
— Saturday's Child • Kathleen Norris

... the Mississippi, on a bluff above the river, fortified by the Confederates in the Civil War; after a siege of over a year surrendered to General Grant, 4th ...
— The Nuttall Encyclopaedia - Being a Concise and Comprehensive Dictionary of General Knowledge • Edited by Rev. James Wood

... party of tourists on a lake in Scotland, and threatened to capsize the boat. When it seemed that the crisis had really come, the largest and strongest man in the party, in a state of intense fear, said, "Let us pray." "No, no, my man," shouted the bluff old boatman; "let the little man pray. ...
— Pushing to the Front • Orison Swett Marden

... the east river, stole down along the bank in the gathering twilight, and softly beached their canoe below the white buildings of the Factory. With a muttered word of command to their captive, they disembarked and climbed the steepness of the low bluff to the grass-plot above. The ...
— The Silent Places • Stewart Edward White

... ranch the way to the Lava Beds leads down the Bremer Meadows past many a smooth grassy knoll and jutting cliff, along the shore of Lower Klamath Lake, and thence across a few miles of sage plain to the brow of the wall-like bluff of lava four hundred and fifty feet above Tule Lake. Here you are looking southeastward, and the Modoc landscape, which at once takes possession of you, lies revealed in front. It is composed of three principal ...
— Steep Trails • John Muir

... pour oil on the fire, oleum addere camino [Lat.]. explode; let fly, fly off; discharge, detonate, set off, detonize^, fulminate. Adj. violent, vehement; warm; acute, sharp; rough, rude, ungentle, bluff, boisterous, wild; brusque, abrupt, waspish; impetuous; rampant. turbulent; disorderly; blustering, raging &c v.; troublous^, riotous; tumultuary^, tumultuous; obstreperous, uproarious; extravagant; unmitigated; ravening, inextinguishable, tameless; frenzied &c (insane) 503. desperate &c (rash) ...
— Roget's Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases: Body • Roget

... addressing Lucien with a bluff German heartiness that concealed his dangerous subtlety; "well, so you have made your peace with Mme. d'Espard; she is delighted with you, and we all know," he added, looking round the group, "how difficult it is to ...
— Lost Illusions • Honore De Balzac

... Cox had united their commands and were advancing upon Wise and Floyd caused General Lee to move at once to their support. He found General Floyd at Meadow Bluff and General Wise at Sewell Mountain. The latter position being very favorable for defense, the troops were concentrated there to await the threatened attack by Rosecrans, who advanced and took position in sight of General Lee's intrenched camp, and, having remained ...
— The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government • Jefferson Davis

... persons he loved the feel of it in his fingers, the sensation of having it in his pocket. Smith was vain, in his way, and money satisfied his vanity. It gave him prestige, power, the attention he craved. He could call any flashy talker's bluff when his pockets were full of money. It imparted self-assurance. He could the better indulge his propensity for resenting slights, either real or fancied. Money would buy him out of trouble. Yes, Smith liked the feel of money. He took a roll of banknotes from the belt pocket ...
— 'Me-Smith' • Caroline Lockhart

... a bluff about half a mile from the ruins of what looked like an old fort, but which was now embedded in banks of clay and overgrown with moss and rank weeds, he found that the whole structure had been built ...
— Jack North's Treasure Hunt - Daring Adventures in South America • Roy Rockwood

... dangerous nonsense, and she rather wanted to say so. Most of her life had been passed among soldiers. Her father had been a general in the Artillery. Her two brothers were serving in India. Her husband had been a bluff and straightforward man of action, full of hard commonsense, and the sterling virtues that so often belong to the martinet. Mr. Amarinth and Lord Reggie were specimens of manhood totally strange to her—until now she had not realised ...
— The Green Carnation • Robert Smythe Hichens

... told me to find fault like the mischief, and I'm going to call your bluff. This here's Montana, recollect, and I raise the long howl over them habiliments. The best thing you can do is pace along to the house and discard before the boys get sight of yuh. They'd queer yuh with the whole outfit, sure. Uh course," he went on soothingly when he saw ...
— The Lure of the Dim Trails • by (AKA B. M. Sinclair) B. M. Bower

... by the General Com'dg to say that he deems it advisable that you should move your Hd. Qrs. higher up the river, say in the vicinity of Webber's Falls or Pheasant Bluff. He is desirous that you should be somewhere near the Council when that body meets, so that any attempt of the enemy to interfere with their deliberations may be thwarted by you."—DUVAL to Cooper, April 22, 1863, Confederate Records, chap. 2, no. ...
— The American Indian as Participant in the Civil War • Annie Heloise Abel

... before the flattery of the novelist, like the bloom of a plum before the breath of a boy, when he polishes the powdered fruit ere he devours it. No sooner had his Highness agreed to be changed into bluff Harry than the secret purpose of his adviser was immediately detected. No Court confessor, seduced by the vision of a red hat, ever betrayed the secrets of his sovereign with greater fervour than did von Chronicle labour ...
— Vivian Grey • The Earl of Beaconsfield

... pard," said Dick confidently; "no ghost kin rake down the pot ag'in the keerds I've got here. This ain't no bluff!" ...
— Drift from Two Shores • Bret Harte

... soil. Seward, Sumner, Chase, and John P. Hale had preceded him. Less favored than these senators in the advantages of early life, less powerful in debate, he yet brought to the common cause some qualities which they did not possess. His bluff address, his aggressive temper, his readiness to meet the champions of slavery in physical combat as well as in intellectual discussion, drew to him a large measure of ...
— Twenty Years of Congress, Volume 2 (of 2) • James Gillespie Blaine

... that is most frequently described is that known as the Basket trick, which is in my opinion the chef d'oeuvre of the Indian Jadoo-wallah. It is a wonderful bluff usually wonderfully shewn. ...
— Indian Conjuring • L. H. Branson

... these faces are commonplace, with bourgeois cunning written on the heavy features; one is bluff, another stolid, a third bloated, a fourth stately. The sculptors have dealt fairly with all, and not one has the lineaments of utter baseness. To Cristoforo Solari's statues of Lodovico Sforza and his wife, Beatrice d'Este, the ...
— Sketches and Studies in Italy and Greece, Complete - Series I, II, and III • John Symonds

... the most of a tranquil afternoon, where there was an armistice of storm, to climb the bluff of Mount Solaro. A ruined fort caps that limestone bulwark; and there we lay together, drinking the influences of sea, sun, and wind. Immeasurably deep beneath us plunged the precipices, deep, deep descending to a bay where fisher boats were rocking, diminished ...
— New Italian sketches • John Addington Symonds

... seen by vessels coming from the eastward as soon as they rounded Cape Schank. It would also serve as a leading mark for navigating the southern channel, but the tower would require to be of considerable height to show the light over Shortland's Bluff ...
— Narrative Of The Voyage Of H.M.S. Rattlesnake, Commanded By The Late Captain Owen Stanley, R.N., F.R.S. Etc. During The Years 1846-1850. Including Discoveries And Surveys In New Guinea, The Louisiade • John MacGillivray

... if you know what's good for you. Go to bed, or not, when I get my dogs outside, so help me, onto the sled you go. Mebbe you fooled with me, but I'll just see your bluff and take you in ...
— The God of His Fathers • Jack London

... interesting accompanied him in the shape of a young and beautiful wife. Not every geologist whose years have entered the fifties can go forth and capture in second marriage a charming New England girl, thirty years his junior. Yet those who knew Mr. Gale—his splendid physique, his bluff cordiality, the vigour of his various talk—were scarcely surprised. The young lady was no heiress; she had, in fact, been a school teacher, and might have wearied through her best years in that uncongenial pursuit. Transplanted ...
— Born in Exile • George Gissing

... Dare. He wondered vaguely how he should look when he also took his place among his relations. Nature had favored him with a better mustache than most men, but he had a premonitory feeling that the very mustache itself, though undeniable in real life, would look out of keeping among these bluff, frank, light-haired people, of whom it seemed he—he who had never been near them before—was the ...
— The Danvers Jewels, and Sir Charles Danvers • Mary Cholmondeley

... breeze this day was not so strong as the day before, and it veered out more, so that we had a fair wind to run in with to the shore, and at sunset anchored in twenty fathom, clean sand, about five leagues from the Bluff point, which was not a cape (as it appeared at a great distance), but the easternmost end of an island about five or six leagues in length, and one in breadth. There were three or four rocky islands about a league from us, between us and the Bluff point, and we ...
— Early Australian Voyages • John Pinkerton

... bad paper, eh? Come now, didn't you cash a check on the Cotton Exchange Bank for about six hundred dollars when there was only fifteen on deposit? Don't try to bluff me. I know your sort. Lucky if ...
— The Confessions of Artemas Quibble • Arthur Train

... Madam O'Connor only laughs heartily, and gives her a little smart blow on the shoulder with her fan. Olga laughs too, gayly, and Hermia lets her lips part with one of her rare but perfect smiles. If she likes any one besides Olga and her children, it is bluff and ...
— Rossmoyne • Unknown

... popularity has descended to our time, in which he is admired by the unreflecting because of the boldness and dash of his actions and on account of the consequences of those actions, so that he is commonly known as "bluff King Hal," a title that speaks more as to the general estimate of his character than would a whole volume of professed personal panegyric, or of elaborate defence of his policy and his deeds. But this is not sufficient for those persons who would have reasons ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 10, No. 57, July, 1862 - A Magazine Of Literature, Art, And Politics • Various

... fought in fierceness, now in peace we part. My luckless heart hath ever been the goal Sought by your sabres, but in vain, O Heart! Welcome to death amid the drum's far roll, Great souls, where I no more will dare your dart. 'Tis best to die where war's bluff banners wave, Swathed in your guerdon, "Bravest of ...
— Soldier Songs and Love Songs • A.H. Laidlaw

... big bluff! Daddy'll be here in the morning sure!" That was what the attending nurse overheard of the parting. A minute after the door had shut, she discovered her little patient shedding silent tears for "daddy"; but he brightened quickly ...
— Polly of Lady Gay Cottage • Emma C. Dowd

... a pity! (Dropping his sarcastic tone and facing him suddenly and seriously) Do you at all realize, sir, that we have nothing standing between us and destruction but our own bluff and the sheepishness of these colonists? They are men of the same English stock as ourselves: six to one of us (repeating it emphatically), six to one, sir; and nearly half our troops are Hessians, Brunswickers, German dragoons, and Indians with scalping knives. These are the countrymen on ...
— The Devil's Disciple • George Bernard Shaw

... great many times in San Francisco. Their most satisfactory residence was on a bluff on California Street. Their windows looked down on a lot of Chinese houses—"tin-can houses," they were called—small wooden shanties covered with beaten-out cans. Steve and Mark would look down on these houses, waiting until all the Chinamen were inside; then one of ...
— Mark Twain, A Biography, 1835-1910, Complete - The Personal And Literary Life Of Samuel Langhorne Clemens • Albert Bigelow Paine

... mesa land that was half desert. Until then he had not known that her window saw so far; though it was not strange that he could see her light, since he was on the crest of a ridge higher than any other until one reached the bluff that held Sunlight Basin like a ...
— Starr, of the Desert • B. M Bower

... as if the very devil was in it. The Englishmen treated his downright refusal to sell as a piece of bluff, and talked on as though it were merely the opening of the negotiation. When he became plain with them in his anger, and told them why he would not sell, they seemed to have been prepared for this as a stroke of business, and were ready to ...
— Henry James, Jr. • William Dean Howells

... this," said Muhlenberg. "You are asking God to restore me, and I am asking God to take me home. There must not be any contradiction in our prayers, for it is evident that He cannot answer them both." This was characteristic of his bluff frankness, as well as of his ...
— Recollections of a Long Life - An Autobiography • Theodore Ledyard Cuyler

... Charlton's manner—bluff, unceremonious, candid, at times rude. He treated women exactly as he treated men, and he treated all men as intimates, free and easy fellow travelers afoot upon a dusty, vulgar highway. She had found charm in that manner, so natural to the man of no pretense, ...
— The Conflict • David Graham Phillips

... nearer, I'll sh-sh-shoot you dead!" quavered Ingred, wishing she had at least some semblance of a pistol to bluff with. ...
— A Popular Schoolgirl • Angela Brazil

... progressing for some time before the captain's arrival. In front of the bluff of rock blazed a fire made of birch and maple, and on a spit before this a huge piece of venison was roasting. A hideous old woman, with eyes like a rattlesnake, and draggled hair coloured like the moss upon an aged fir, stood by the spit, which every few moments she turned. ...
— The Four Canadian Highwaymen • Joseph Edmund Collins

... wolf's gray, was clipped all over within an inch of his head, and stood up like the bristles on a wild boar's back. His brows were bushy, and jutted, roof-like, over his deeply-sunken eyes; his nose was bluff as a bull-dog's; his cheek-bones were rough and high; his eyes were wide-set; his mouth was cut square across almost from ear to ear; his chin was square and massy; he had an Adam's apple as large as a gilly-flower ripening on his throat; his hands were large and bony, and ...
— Summerfield - or, Life on a Farm • Day Kellogg Lee

... Demorest, dryly; "but if people choose to believe this bluff gotten up by the petty thieves themselves to increase their importance and secure their immunity—they can. But here's Manuel to ...
— The Argonauts of North Liberty • Bret Harte

... the bow of the canoe with his head leaning over the edge gazing abstractedly at his own reflected visage, while his hands trailed through the cool water, and his young dog—a shaggy indescribable beast with a bluff nose and a bushy tail—watched him intently, as a mother might watch an only child in a dangerous situation. And the old sun-dried, and storm-battered, and time-shrivelled mulatto trader, in those canoe they were embarked and ...
— Martin Rattler • Robert Michael Ballantyne

... gasoline on you. She loaded her car with girls on purpose. There was no room to spare. She stopped it above the station yard and stayed there until after the train had come in. After a while she drove into the yard and out again. Not one of us set foot on the platform. It was a clever bluff and served ...
— Marjorie Dean, College Sophomore • Pauline Lester

... at once to invest Donelson, and sat down before it on the 12th with 15,000 men. The stronghold stood upon a bluff 100 feet high. On the east it was protected by the Cumberland River; on the north and south by two flooded creeks. Along a crest back of the fort a mile or two ran a semicircular line of rifle-pits, with abatis in front. Nine ...
— History of the United States, Volume 4 • E. Benjamin Andrews

... I know; it may be half a mile deep and ten miles across, with a perpendicular bluff a thousand feet high on the ...
— The Young Ranchers - or Fighting the Sioux • Edward S. Ellis

... all track of time and place, trusting blindly to a downward course. The hurricane still harried them with unabated fury, when all at once they came to another bluff where the ground fell away abruptly. Without waiting to investigate whether the slope terminated in a drift or a precipice, they flung themselves over. Down they floundered, the two half-insensible men tangled together as if in a race for total oblivion, only to plunge through ...
— The Silver Horde • Rex Beach

... this bit of suffrage to women, came out the next morning with a three-quarter-page picture of a beautiful woman, labeled New Orleans, on a prancing steed named Progress, dashing over a chasm entitled Sanitary Neglect and Commercial Stagnation, to a bluff called A Greater City, while in one corner was a female angel with wings outspread, designated as Victory. The two-page account ...
— The History of Woman Suffrage, Volume IV • Various

... a huge rocky bluff, shooting out into the river more than half a mile from the shore, and rising, at its highest point, nearly two hundred feet. It was joined to the shore by a marshy neck of land, crossed by ...
— Hero Stories from American History - For Elementary Schools • Albert F. Blaisdell

... many were married, and encumbered with families; not a few were already up in years; and this itself was out of tune with my imaginations, for the ideal emigrant should certainly be young. Again, I thought he should offer to the eye some bold type of humanity, with bluff or hawk-like features, and the stamp of an eager and pushing disposition. Now those around me were for the most part quiet, orderly, obedient citizens, family men broken by adversity, elderly youths who ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition - Vol. 2 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... all bluff!" cried a voice. "They know that by holding out they can get what they want. They'd cave in directly if we ...
— A Dash from Diamond City • George Manville Fenn

... fire, and the Government is now rebuilding it upon a more formidable scale. The Staten Island shore is lined with guns. At the water's edge is a powerful casemated battery, known as Fort Tompkins, mounting forty heavy guns. The bluff above is crowned with a large and formidable looking work, also of granite, known as Fort Richmond, mounting one hundred and forty guns. To the right and left of the fort, are Batteries Hudson, Morton, North Cliff, and South Cliff; mounting about eighty guns of heavy ...
— Lights and Shadows of New York Life - or, the Sights and Sensations of the Great City • James D. McCabe

... git you once talkin' 'if-only,' the bluff is called," replied the smith, with a grin. "Now what are you needin' at ...
— Bruvver Jim's Baby • Philip Verrill Mighels

... ain't just the sort of politics that you've been used to. But I'm kind of used to it myself. Had to pull the same game off over in Colfax County when I was runnin' for sheriff the first time. It worked, too, because the folks that was mixed up in it knowed I wasn't ringing in any bluff." He looked at Dunlavey with a level, steady gaze, his eyes gleaming coldly. "If you think I'm bluffing now, chirp for some one of your pluguglies to bust into this game. I'd sort of like to let off my campaign guns into ...
— The Coming of the Law • Charles Alden Seltzer

... bluff." Perhaps the lesson might have a salutary effect. And so, as his good humor came back to him, ...
— The Vagrant Duke • George Gibbs

... Mazeppa proved that he fully merited his master's sincere if inelegant praise. They got on capitally now, for Tom was in his proper sphere, and showed his best side, being civil and gay in the bluff boy-fashion that was natural to him; while Polly forgot to be shy, and liked this sort of "toughening" much better than the other. They laughed and talked, and kept taking "just one more," till the sunshine was all gone, ...
— An Old-fashioned Girl • Louisa May Alcott

... being displaced by General Sumner, offered his services to Jefferson Davis and was killed at Shiloh. Edward Baker, now a Senator from Oregon, left the halls of Congress for a Union command. At the head of the California volunteer regiment he charged the enemy at Ball's Bluff and fell, his body pierced by half a dozen bullets. Curiously different was the record of Broderick's old foeman, William Gwin. In October, 1861, he started East via the Isthmus of Panama, accompanied by Calhoun Benham, one of Terry's seconds in the fateful duel. ...
— Port O' Gold • Louis John Stellman

... having meantime billeted himself in Colonel Baby's big brick house at Sandwich, issued a proclamation to the "inhabitants of Canada." As a sample of egotism, bluff and bombast it stands unrivalled. He told the inhabitants of Canada that he was in possession of their country, that an ocean and wilderness isolated them from England, whose tyranny he knew they felt. His grand army was ready to release ...
— The Story of Isaac Brock - Hero, Defender and Saviour of Upper Canada, 1812 • Walter R. Nursey

... which gave the trouble is evidently in the hollow of one of the big waves that continue through the pressure ridges at Cape Crozier towards the Bluff. There are probably more of these waves, though we crossed several during the last part of the march—so far it seems that the soft parts are in patches only and do not extend the whole length of the hollow. Our course is to pick a way with ...
— Scott's Last Expedition Volume I • Captain R. F. Scott

... oldest engineer on the road, off duty, but a privileged character on all occasions, stepped from the gossiping crowd of loungers at a little distance. He swung up into the cab with the expert airiness of long usage. His bluff, hearty face expressed admiration and satisfaction, as his rapid eye took in the ...
— Ralph on the Overland Express - The Trials and Triumphs of a Young Engineer • Allen Chapman

... be winning and still remain down-hearted, but this is not the case at Paris. The supposed fear of Germany is only political bluff. France fears no Germans. She fears nobody. Perhaps she ought to fear—for the far future. But she has always had a belief in herself and her way of doing things and an inbred contempt for other races as for barbarians, and it has only needed this colossal victory ...
— Europe—Whither Bound? - Being Letters of Travel from the Capitals of Europe in the Year 1921 • Stephen Graham

... avarice, cunning, bluff, campaigning with humor and natural forces. "The starry night and the majestic rivers might just as well be plaster-walls," she whispered. "What terrible occupations are these to make our brothers so dull, bald ...
— Fate Knocks at the Door - A Novel • Will Levington Comfort

... drawn somewhat to Sandy. Quite close to these, round another fire, were grouped the three bachelor brothers Skyd, with their friend Dobson. At another, within earshot of these, were Edwin Brook and his wife, his daughter Gertrude, Scholtz and his wife, Junkie, George Dally, and Stephen Orpin, with bluff Hans Marais, who had somehow got acquainted with the Brook family, and seemed to prefer their society to ...
— The Settler and the Savage • R.M. Ballantyne

... position of attention is "chest lifted; and arched." There should be a stretch upward at the waist. The position should give the impression of a man as proud of himself as he can be. This is a bluff which works, not only by making a good first impression on others, but by causing the man himself to ...
— Military Instructors Manual • James P. Cole and Oliver Schoonmaker

... the party was brought up by a large, powerfully-built man, with a bluff, honest, but rugged countenance, slashed with many a cut and scar, and stamped with that surly, sturdy, bull-dog-like look, which an Englishman always delights to contemplate, because he conceives it to be ...
— Jack Sheppard - A Romance • William Harrison Ainsworth

... not upon the sea-beach to-day. I walked a mile or so along the sand, but did not find her. She had gone around the little bluff to our shark-line. This was a long rope, like a clothes-line, with a short chain at the end and a great hook, which was baited with a large piece of fish. It was thrown out every day, the land end tied to a stout stake driven into the sand, and the whole business ...
— The Rudder Grangers Abroad and Other Stories • Frank R. Stockton

... hand the ape-man held his heavy spear; but he had no intention of pitting his puny weapon against seven lions; yet he stood there growling and roaring and the lions did likewise. It was purely an exhibition of jungle bluff. Each was trying to frighten off the other. Neither wished to turn back and give way, nor did either at first desire to precipitate an encounter. The lions were fed sufficiently so as not to be goaded by pangs of hunger and as for Tarzan he seldom ate the meat of the carnivores; but ...
— Tarzan and the Jewels of Opar • Edgar Rice Burroughs

... sob and moan of the sea's dirge, Its plangor and surge; The awful biting sough Of drifted snows along some arctic bluff, That veer and luff, ...
— Behind the Arras - A Book of the Unseen • Bliss Carman

... pump up water from the creek, and when he appeared they ordered him off without showing so much as a head. And he went, for the swiftness of the change had confused him; he was whipped before he began. There was no use to fight or to put up a bluff, the men behind the wall were determined; and while, according to law, they held no title the law was far away. It was a weapon for rich men who could afford to pay the price; but how could he, a poor man, hope to win back his ...
— Silver and Gold - A Story of Luck and Love in a Western Mining Camp • Dane Coolidge

... favoured the Southerner because the election of Jackson and Harrison convinced him that winning battles opened a sure way to the White House. But Thurlow Weed was not a stranger to Taylor's sympathies. He had satisfied himself that the bluff old warrior, though a native of Virginia and a Louisiana slave-holder, favoured domestic manufactures, opposed the admission of Texas, and had been a lifelong admirer of Henry Clay; and, with this information, he went to work, cautiously as was his ...
— A Political History of the State of New York, Volumes 1-3 • DeAlva Stanwood Alexander

... angrily, and old Neb, who had listened, stepped quickly up to him. "Marse Frank," he pleaded, "don' yo' let dat white-trash bluff yo'!" The old darkey's voice was tremulous, his eyes were moist with feeling for his humiliated master. A great resolve thrilled through him. "See heah, honey, I's be'n sabin' all mah life. I's got a pile o' ...
— In Old Kentucky • Edward Marshall and Charles T. Dazey

... Denas to have your love, but there then! your brother is a fine, handsome young man, and—no offence, miss—it would not be a great honour for my little maid to have his love or the likelihood of it—and out of temptation is out of danger, miss, and if so be I do speak plain and bluff, you will not put it ...
— A Singer from the Sea • Amelia Edith Huddleston Barr



Words linked to "Bluff" :   feigning, bold, Pine Bluff, bluffer, bluff out, cards, sheer, affright, frighten, deception, bluffness, card game, move, steep, deceit, pretense, go, dissimulation, fright, Poplar Bluff, blindman's bluff



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