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stuffed shirt

a pompous, self-satisfied, and inflexible person.
Origin of stuffed shirt
1910-15, Americanism Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for stuffed shirt
Historical Examples
  • Remember that stuffed shirt ground major at the Broome field in Australia?

    Dave Dawson on Guadalcanal Robert Sydney Bowen
  • I'm tired of all that other crowd—the stuffed shirt brigade, you know.

    The Salamander Owen Johnson
  • “Never try to show up a policeman, even if he is a stuffed shirt,” remarked the reporter softly.

    Clue of the Silken Ladder Mildred A. Wirt
  • He had been herded into a corner by Johnson, Aunt Gretchen's stuffed shirt of a butler, who was standing guard over him.

  • He characterized Frank Shabata by a Bohemian expression which is the equivalent of stuffed shirt.

    O Pioneers! Willa Cather
  • Nayland is a stuffed shirt of the first stuffing, and a tinpot Hitler to boot, but he is fanatically and incorruptibly patriotic.

    The Mercenaries Henry Beam Piper
  • But Thar sounded like a stuffed shirt now, and that is the last thing Hockley would have expected.

    The Unlearned Raymond F. Jones
British Dictionary definitions for stuffed shirt

stuffed shirt

(informal) a pompous or formal person
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Slang definitions & phrases for stuffed shirt



  1. Liquor, esp bootleg liquor: The stuff is here and it's mellow (1920s+ Prohibition era)
  2. Any narcotic: Where's the stuff?/ He came out and seemed to be off the stuff (1920+ Narcotics)
  3. A woman regarded as a sex object; ass, cooz, pussy: classiest stuff this side of Denver (1909+)
  4. The various ways a pitcher throws the ball, esp curves, sliders, etc (1912+ Baseball)


  1. To do the sex act; fuck • Chiefly British and most often heard in the passive imperative form get stuffed, a rude insult; used in any sense of fuck: No women, no children, no fun. Stuff this (1960+)
  2. To pitch using effective ''stuff'': ''He'd stuffed us pretty good before,'' said Brewers manager Phil Garner (1990s+ Baseball)

Related Terms

all that kind of crap, black stuff, eatin' stuff, the green stuff, hard stuff, hot stuff, kid stuff, know one's onions, know what one can do with something, rough stuff, tell someone what to do with something, white stuff

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with stuffed shirt

stuffed shirt

An overly formal or pompous person, as in She's such a stuffed shirt that I'm surprised you'd invite her to a barbecue. This expression alludes to a shirt filled with paper (instead of a real person). [ c. 1900 ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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