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[n. ri-buhf, ree-buhf; v. ri-buhf] /n. rɪˈbʌf, ˈri bʌf; v. rɪˈbʌf/
a blunt or abrupt rejection, as of a person making advances.
a peremptory refusal of a request, offer, etc.; snub.
a check to action or progress.
verb (used with object)
to give a rebuff to; check; repel; refuse; drive away.
1580-90; < Middle French rebuffer < Italian ribuffare to disturb, reprimand, derivative of ribuffo (noun), equivalent to ri- re- + buffo puff; see buffoon
Related forms
rebuffable, adjective
rebuffably, adverb
unrebuffable, adjective
unrebuffed, adjective
4. snub, slight, reject, spurn. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for rebuffed
  • Until now he had rebuffed my suggestions of a face-to-face meeting.
  • His attempts to build a coalition were rebuffed, and he has run a minority government ever since.
  • He has rebuffed calls to suspend the chief detective, repeating that he will not meddle in inter-agency disputes.
  • rebuffed by the leadership, he led a renegade group into the bush.
  • He rebuffed her entreaties more than once and, in the end, only agreed to let her work for the company as a secretary.
  • So far, he's been rebuffed, though he continues to try to persuade them to give the discipline's central exercise a chance.
  • The next day, when he tried to kiss her again, she rebuffed him.
  • They have rebuffed our requests to identify any acceptable offsets.
  • Donovan rebuffed this initial notice and the similar notices that followed.
  • Efforts by these consumer to have poor or incomplete work fixed were rebuffed or ignored by the defendants.
British Dictionary definitions for rebuffed


verb (transitive)
to snub, reject, or refuse (a person offering help or sympathy, an offer of help, etc) abruptly or out of hand
to beat back (an attack); repel
a blunt refusal or rejection; snub
any sudden check to progress or action
Word Origin
C16: from Old French rebuffer, from Italian ribuffare, from ribuffo a reprimand, from ri-re- + buffo puff, gust, apparently of imitative 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 rebuffed



1580s, from obsolete French rebuffer "to check, snub," from Italian ribuffare "to check, chide, snide," from ribuffo "a snub," from ri- "back" (from Latin re-, see re-) + buffo "a puff," of imitative origin (cf. buffet (v.)). Related: Rebuffed; rebuffing.


1610s, from rebuff (v.), or from Middle French rebuffe or Italian ribuffo.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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