rufflike, adj.
/ruf/, n.
1. a neckpiece or collar of lace, lawn, or the like, gathered or drawn into deep, full, regular folds, worn in the 16th and 17th centuries.
2. something resembling such a piece in form or position.
3. a collar, or set of lengthened or specially marked hairs or feathers, on the neck of an animal.
4. Ornith. a species of European and Asian sandpiper, Philomachus pugnax, the male of which has a large erectile ruff of feathers during the breeding season. Cf. reeve3.
5. Alaska and Northern Canada. a fringe of fur around the edge of a parka hood or along the edges of a jacket.
6. tease (def. 3).
[1515-25; perh. back formation from RUFFLE1]
/ruf/, Cards.
1. an act or instance of trumping when one cannot follow suit.
2. an old game of cards, resembling whist.
v.t., v.i.
3. to trump when unable to follow suit.
[1580-90; prob. < F ro(u)ffle; c. It ronfa a card game, prob. < G Trumpf TRUMP1]
/ruf/, n.
a small European freshwater fish, Acerina cernua, of the perch family.
[1400-50; ME ruf, roffe; perh. special use of ROUGH]

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      in zoology, Old World bird of the sandpiper subfamily Calidritinae (family Scolopacidae, order Charadriiformes (charadriiform)) remarkable for its unusual courtship plumage and behaviour. The name ruff applies to the species or may be applied to the male only. In spring the 30-cm (12-inch) male acquires a double crest (“cape”) and a collar (“ruff”); these may contain reddish, brown, black, and white feathers in proportions that vary with the individual. (This is the most extreme case of polymorphism known among birds.) The female, called the reeve, is only about 25 cm (10 inches) long and is plain grayish brown, as is the male in winter.

      In the breeding season, males gather on a traditional display area ( lek), usually a bare hill, and, while the reeves watch, display close together by making short rushes with cape and ruff erect and wings drooping. During the silent courtship dance, males may raise head tufts, leap into the air, bow, crouch, and stand tall. Two social classes of males are evident during the display. Resident males have black, brown, or patterned ruffs. They share their lek territories with subordinate more-conspicuous males that have white ruffs. The lighter subordinate males help attract females to the territories of the resident males. While the aggressive resident male is busy defending his area of the lek, the subordinate male sometimes “steals” copulations with visiting females. This behaviour is genetically inherited along with the coloration of the male.

      When a reeve strolls into their midst, the males collapse, quivering, with bills stuck into the ground. Then the female chooses one of the males, usually a resident male. Before mating, she nibbles at the male's ruff. Alone, she builds a nest, which is well hidden in a shallow depression in marsh grasses, incubates two to four olive eggs (egg), and raises the chicks. Ruffs are extremely dimorphic; the sexes keep apart, even in flocks.

      The ruff breeds in river meadows and coastal marshes from northern Europe to Siberia. It is decreasing in population because of human cultivation. Ruffs winter on broad mud flats from the North Sea to southern Africa and parts of southern Asia, and the species has been recorded with increasing frequency in North America. It eats insects (insect), especially flies (fly) and beetles (beetle), as well as mollusks (mollusk), worms (worm), small fish, and frogs (frog). During migration and winter, it relies on seeds for much of its diet.

Sy Montgomery

      in dresswear, crimped or pleated collar or frill, usually wide and full, worn in Europe, especially from the mid-16th century into the 17th century, by both men and women. The beginnings of the ruff can be seen in the early years of the 16th century, when men allowed the top of the shirt to be exposed. A drawstring through the top, when pulled tight, created an incipient ruff. The ruff increased in size, becoming a symbol of the aristocracy. Women wanted to show their status in society and also wished to expose the bosom, so the ruff developed as a half circle—open in front and rising in back.

      The ruff was at first worn with a supporting wire frame and was later starched. Usually, it was white. By the end of the 16th century, the ruff was generally replaced by other types of collars. Once again, in the early 19th century, a modified ruff became fashionable for women's daytime wear.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ruff — ist der Name von Charles Ruff (1939–2000), US amerikanischer Jurist Christiane Ruff (* 1960), deutsche Fernsehproduzentin Franz Ruff (1906–1979), deutscher Architekt Hugo Ruff (1843–1924), deutscher Heimatforscher Ingo Ruff (* 20. Jhdt.),… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Ruff — Ruff, n. [Of uncertain origin: cf. Icel. r[umc]finn rough, uncombed, Pr. ruf rude, rough, Sp. rufo frizzed, crisp, curled, G. raufen to pluck, fight, rupfen to pluck, pull, E. rough. [root]18. Cf. {Ruffle} to wrinkle.] 1. A muslin or linen collar …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Ruff — Ruff, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Ruffed}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Ruffing}.] 1. To ruffle; to disorder. Spenser. [1913 Webster] 2. (Mil.) To beat with the ruff or ruffle, as a drum. [1913 Webster] 3. (Hawking) To hit, as the prey, without fixing it. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Ruff — Ruff, n. [F. ronfle; cf. It. ronfa, Pg. rufa, rifa.] (Card Playing) (a) A game similar to whist, and the predecessor of it. Nares. (b) The act of trumping, especially when one has no card of the suit led. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Ruff — Ruff, v. i. & t. (Card Playing) To trump. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Ruff — Ruff, Ruffe Ruffe, n. [OE. ruffe.] (Zo[ o]l.) A small freshwater European perch ({Acerina vulgaris}); called also {pope}, {blacktail}, and {stone perch}, or {striped perch}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • ruff — ruff; wood·ruff; …   English syllables

  • ruff — ► NOUN 1) a projecting starched frill worn round the neck, characteristic of Elizabethan and Jacobean costume. 2) a ring of feathers or hair round the neck of a bird or mammal. 3) (pl. same or ruffs) a wading bird, the male of which has a large… …   English terms dictionary

  • ruff — ruff1 [ruf] n. [contr. of RUFFLE1, n.] 1. a high, frilled or pleated collar of starched muslin, lace, etc., worn by men and women in the 16th and 17th cent. 2. a band of distinctively colored or protruding feathers or fur about the neck of an… …   English World dictionary

  • ruff — [rʌf] n [Date: 1500 1600; Origin: Probably from RUFFLE1] 1.) a stiff circular white collar, worn in the 16th century 2.) a circle of feathers or fur around the neck of an animal or bird …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • ruff — [ rʌf ] noun count 1. ) the fur or feathers that grow around the neck of an animal or bird 2. ) a large collar with upright folds that people wore in the 16th and 17th centuries …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

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