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[puhf-in] /ˈpʌf ɪn/
any of several alcidine sea birds of the genera Fratercula and Lunda, having a short neck and a large, compressed, grooved bill, as F. arctica (Atlantic puffin) of the North Atlantic.
Origin of puffin
1300-50; Middle English poffoun, poffin, puffon (compare Anglo-Latin poffo, puffo); origin uncertain Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for puffin
  • Writer describes a plush puffin golf club head cover he was given by his brother.
  • puffin couples often reunite at the same burrow site each year.
  • The puffin is a bigger bird than the guillemot and usually takes the day, edging out the docile guillemots.
  • Birds to see include: rufous hummingbird, horned puffin, red-necked stint.
British Dictionary definitions for puffin


any of various northern diving birds of the family Alcidae (auks, etc), esp Fratercula arctica (common or Atlantic puffin), having a black-and-white plumage and a brightly coloured vertically flattened bill: order Charadriiformes
Word Origin
C14: perhaps of Cornish origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for puffin

North Atlantic seabird, mid-14c., perhaps connected with puff on notion of appearance, or from some Celtic word (earliest association is with Cornwall and Scilly), and altered by influence of puff.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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