• WordNet 3.6
    • v baffle check the emission of (sound)
    • v baffle be a mystery or bewildering to "This beats me!","Got me--I don't know the answer!","a vexing problem","This question really stuck me"
    • v baffle hinder or prevent (the efforts, plans, or desires) of "What ultimately frustrated every challenger was Ruth's amazing September surge","foil your opponent"
    • n baffle a flat plate that controls or directs the flow of fluid or energy
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Oddly, no term existed for "homosexuality" in ancient Greece there were only a variety of expressions referring to specific homosexual roles. Experts find this baffling, as the old Greek culture regarded male/male love in the highest regard. According to several linguists, the word "homosexual" was not coined until 1869 by the Hungarian physician Karoly Maria Benkert.
    • Baffle A defeat by artifice, shifts, and turns; discomfiture. "A baffle to philosophy."
    • Baffle (Engin) A deflector, as a plate or wall, so arranged across a furnace or boiler flue as to mingle the hot gases and deflect them against the substance to be heated.
    • Baffle (Engin) A grating or plate across a channel or pipe conveying water, gas, or the like, by which the flow is rendered more uniform in different parts of the cross section of the stream; -- used in measuring the rate of flow, as by means of a weir.
    • Baffle (Coal Mining) A lever for operating the throttle valve of a winding engine.
    • Baffle To cause to undergo a disgraceful punishment, as a recreant knight. "He by the heels him hung upon a tree,
      And baffled so, that all which passed by
      The picture of his punishment might see."
    • Baffle To check by perplexing; to disconcert, frustrate, or defeat; to thwart. "A baffled purpose.""A suitable scripture ready to repel and baffle them all.""Calculations so difficult as to have baffled , until within a . . . recent period, the most enlightened nations.""The mere intricacy of a question should not baffle us."
    • Baffle To check by shifts and turns; to elude; to foil. "The art that baffles time's tyrannic claim."
    • Baffle To practice deceit.
    • Baffle To struggle against in vain; as, a ship baffles with the winds.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • baffle To disgrace; treat with mockery or contumely; hold up as an object of scorn or contempt; insult; specifically, to subject to indignities, as a recreant knight or traitor.
    • baffle To hoodwink; cheat.
    • baffle To circumvent by interposing obstacles or difficulties; defeat the efforts, purpose, or success of; frustrate; check; foil; thwart; disconcert; confound: as, the fox baffled his pursuers; to baffle curiosity or endeavor.
    • baffle To beat about, as the wind or stray cattle do standing grain or grass; twist irregularly together. Synonyms Foil, Thwart, etc. See frustrate.
    • baffle To practise deceit; shuffle; quibble.
    • baffle To struggle ineffectually; strive in vain: as, the ship baffled with the gale.
    • baffle In coalmining, to brush out or mix fire-damp with air, to such an extent as to render it non-explosive.
    • n baffle Disgrace; affront.
    • n baffle Defeat; discomfiture.
    • n baffle Same as baffler, 2.
    • n baffle An artificial obstruction (in the form of a board, plate, or cleat placed in the channel) to the continuous smooth flow of a liquid or gas. It is used for the purpose of producing a thorough mixture of the flowing medium, or of checking its velocity, or of detaining solid matters transported or propelled by the flowing medium.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • v.t Baffle baf′fl to check or make ineffectual: :
    • ns Baffle (obs.) confusion, check
    • v.t Baffle baf′fl (obs.) to cheat, hoodwink, bewilder, bring to nought
    • v.t Baffle baf′fl (obs.) to disgrace publicly
    • ***


  • Gabriel Riqueti Mirabeau
    Gabriel Riqueti Mirabeau
    “Nothing baffles the schemes of evil people so much as the calm composure of great souls.”
  • William Hazlitt
    “The are of will-making chiefly consists in baffling the importunity of expectation.”
  • Charles Caleb Colton
    “Nothing more completely baffles one who is full of tricks and duplicity than straight forward and simple integrity in another.”
  • Christopher Leach
    Christopher Leach
    “Human Love... It is that extra creation that stands hurt and baffled at the place of death. Being human, wanting children and sunlight and breath to go on, forever.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Cf. Lowland Scotch bauchle, to treat contemptuously, bauch, tasteless, abashed, jaded, Icel. bāgr, uneasy, poor, or bāgr, n., struggle, bægja, to push, treat harshly, OF. beffler, beffer, to mock, deceive, dial. G. bäppe, mouth, beffen, to bark, chide
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Prob. Scotch and connected with bauchle; but cf. Fr. beffler, from O. Fr. befe, mockery. Paul Meyer suggests a derivation from Prov. baf, interj. of disdain.


In literature:

Just how any of them could make a move toward it without her knowledge baffled him.
"Daughter of the Sun" by Jackson Gregory
Her beauty might have baffled the most ideal painter of the fair Hebrew saints.
"Tancred" by Benjamin Disraeli
But just as he had baffled his own commanders in the past, so now did Devers baffle all.
"Under Fire" by Charles King
To baffled millions which have gone before.
"The Works of Lord Byron, Volume 4" by Lord Byron
There were lines on the paper, but I could not read them, and M. de Perrencourt's face was fully as baffling.
"Simon Dale" by Anthony Hope
These did not baffle him.
"The Boy Hunters" by Captain Mayne Reid
Edwin was humiliated and baffled.
"Clayhanger" by Arnold Bennett
Emptiness was before me, and I realized what it was to be baffled at the moment of success.
"That Affair Next Door" by Anna Katharine Green
It cannot be regarded as a very adequate picture when both the centre of it and the circumference of it baffle thought.
"The Complex Vision" by John Cowper Powys
Henriette looked at her sister-in-law, with a sad and baffled mien.
"The Daughters of Danaus" by Mona Caird

In poetry:

Baffled by death and love, I lean
Through the gloom.
O Lord of life! am I forbid
To cross the room?
"The Room's Width" by Elizabeth Stuart Phelps Ward
"Yet onward still to ear and eye
The baffling marvel calls;
I fain would look before I die
On Norembega's walls.
"Norembega" by John Greenleaf Whittier
O the force of Runic verses,
O the mighty strength of song
Cannot baffle all the curses
Which to mortal state belong.
"Runic Verses" by George Borrow
An angler came to cast his fly
Beneath a baffling tree.
I smiled, when I had caught his eye,
And he smiled back at me.
"An Idyl" by John Charles McNeill
And, as I passed into the night,
I heard one baffled foe aver:
"'Tis sheer futility to fight
An iceberg with a Lucifer!"
"The Impervious Iceberg" by C J Dennis
Tell me no more that black must be
Light's baffle, colour's loss.
Your tresses shoot into the sun
A richly purple gloss.
"Immortal Eve - III" by Manmohan Ghose

In news:

For the past week or so, beginning shortly after committing himself fully to zombie-eyed granny-starving while a baffled nation went, "whaaaaa".
Bloody bear paw baffles central Ill. Costas advocates for gun control at halftime.
Bloody bear paw baffles central Ill. Login Register.
Since Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces began massacring civilians more than a year ago, a baffling question has hung over the conflict: How do they bring themselves to do it.
Bernalillo County officials said they're baffled after someone stole the stripes off the bottom of the Paradise Hills swimming pool.
Braxton's brilliance baffles Badgers' Bielema.
When word started circulating that Rutgers might be the 14th team in the Big Ten, many in the sports business world were baffled.
How do I calculate the forces on a baffle.
I am trying to design a tank baffle.
Baffled by the horse race.
Facebook remains baffling to many small business owners.
JACKSON, MI – Letting the people decide important political issues is a sacred principle of democracy, but sometimes the job is baffling.
'Baffling' Lakers fall yet again, in Cleveland .
The People's Pharmacy: Baffled by conflicting studies.
It's a question that's baffled evolutionary theorists for decades: if survival of the fittest is the rule, how have the genes that contribute to serious, debilitating mental disorders survived.

In science:

Stray Light Control Limiting the stray light from the Sun, other stars, or internal reflections, is essential to achieve the desired level of contrast sensitivity. Baffles and light traps, anti-reflection coatings, contamination control, and careful modeling are the key elements needed to minimize stray light.
Coronographic Methods for the Detection of Terrestrial Planets