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Word of the Day
Saturday, July 10, 2010

Definitions for snuff

  1. To extinguish or suppress.
  2. To cut off or remove the snuff of (candles, tapers, etc.).
  3. The charred or partly consumed portion of a candlewick.

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Citations for snuff
Derek Jeter bashed Duensing's sixth pitch into the bullpen, then almost single-handedly made the run hold up with a spectacular play to snuff a second-and-third Twins threat, and the Yankees won for the 10th time in their last 11 games against the Twins. Phil Miller, "Twins do everything right but win", FoxSportsNorth.com, May 2010
They augur misgovernment at a distance; and snuff the approach of tyranny in every tainted breeze. Edmund Burke, Second Speech on Conciliation with America
Origin of snuff
1520-1530
The verb form of snuff has acquired layers of meaning through time: "to cut or pinch off the burned part of a candle wick," is an adaptation from the noun snoffe, the "burned part of a candle wick." The sense "to die" stems from the 1800s, and "to kill" appears in the 1930s, as in a snuff-film.