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blustering (plural blusterings)

  1. The process or act of blustering.
    • 1784, William Augustus Miles, Letters of Neptune and Gracchus, London: M. Smith, p. 41,[1]
      He will soon disregard the roaring of your eloquence, as the bold sailor contemns the blustering of the winds []
    • 1906, Theodore Roosevelt, A Square Deal, “A Square Deal and the Monroe Doctrine,” p. 179,[2]
      Boasting and blustering are as objectionable among nations as among individuals, and the public men of a great nation owe it to their sense of national self-respect to speak courteously of foreign powers just as a brave and self-respecting man treats all around him courteously.
    • 1960, “Halfway Coexistence,” Time, 18 April, 1960,[3]
      In Moscow, where parties are judged by the quantity and quality of Russian officials who attend, the U.S. party was a smashing success. Some attributed it to the popularity of Ambassador Thompson, others felt it was another sign that coexistence is still Soviet policy in spite of Khrushchev’s blustering.
    • 2010, Emily Hill, “The Pub Bore of British Letters,” Spiked, 26 February, 2010,[4]
      Generally, you know, I’m conspiracy-theory-phobic. But in this case, all Amis’s blustering about how he’s ill-treated seems to mask the reality of a completely simpering attitude to our greatest living novelist utterly regardless of the quality of his literary output.


blustering (comparative more blustering, superlative most blustering)

  1. Engaged in or involving the process of blustering, speaking or protesting loudly.
    • 1593, Gabriel Harvey, Pierce’s supererogation, or a New Prayse of the Old Asse,[5]
      But when we began to renue our old acquaintance, and to shake the handes of discontinued familiaritie, alas, good Gentleman, his mandillion was ouercropped, his witt paunched like his wiues spindle, his art shanked like a lath, his conceit as lank as a shotten herring, and that same blustering eloquence as bleake and wan as the Picture of a forlorne Loouer.
    • 1820, Charles Caleb Colton, Lacon, or Many Things in Few Words, addressed to those who think, New York: C.P. Fessende, 1832, Volume 1, p. 173,[6]
      Oratory is the huffing and blustering spoilt-child of a semi-barbarous age.
    • 1922, Sinclair Lewis, Babbitt, Chapter 9, I,[7]
      For once Babbitt did not break out in blustering efforts to keep the party going.
    • 2011, Colin Freeman, “Egypt’s revolution: leaders must obey new rules, but protesters still impatient for elections and change,” w:The Daily Telegraph, 16 March, 2011,[8]
      In the old days, such impertinence might have seen Mr Aswani taken directly from the studio to the cells; this time, though, it was the prime minister who paid the price. Rendered a nationwide laughing stock by his blustering performance, he resigned a day later - the first casualty of a new era of Egyptian politics, where ministers’ careers are ended not by presidential decree, or by mass street uprising, but because they themselves feel they have failed.
  2. Pompous or arrogant in one's speech or bearing.
    • 1820, The Retort Courteous:
      The Old Inquirer, said Dick Honesty, in' visiting the sick, has seen too many bold, blustering Infidels, in this nasty condition, to entertain the smallest penchant either for their principles, or their exqusitely delightful exits.
    • 1833, R.G.G., Miscellaneous Tales, Original and Select, in Prose and Verse:
      A BLUSTERING FELLOW ! There 's a deadly bore, Placed in a good man's way, who only yearns For happiness and joy.
    • 1947, Upton Sinclair, Presidential Mission, Chapter 25, I,[9]
      Hermann Göring was a dominating and blustering host. His unresting ego did not permit him to permit his guests to do what they pleased; he told them how to entertain themselves, and he told them what to think. When he was with them, he took charge of the conversation; when he chose to be funny, they all laughed, and he laughed loudest.
    • 1991, Rudolf Steiner, Social Issues: Meditative Thinking and the Threefold Social Order, →ISBN:
      At one time there lived here in Switzerland a blustering fellow — I ... I do not overestimate him — by the name of Johannes Scherr. Through his blustering approach and opinions he spoiled many of the sound ideas he presented to the public.
    • 1999, Willis Hall & ‎Keith Waterhouse, Billy Liar, →ISBN, page vi:
      Geoffrey is a more complex person than the blustering character who appears in Act One.
    • 2012, Robert Fortune, A Journey to the Tea Countries of China, →ISBN:
      When he came up he began pushing our boat aside as he had done the others, and in a blustering manner desired us to allow him to get on, as he was in a great hurry.
  3. Very windy; (of wind) blowing very strongly, blustery.
    • c. 1597, William Shakespeare, Henry IV, Part 1, Act V, Scene 1,[10]
      The southern wind
      Doth play the trumpet to his purposes,
      And by his hollow whistling in the leaves
      Foretells a tempest and a blustering day.
    • 1640, George Herbert, Jacula Prudentum; or, Outlandish Proverbs, Sentences, etc., in The Remains of that Sweet Singer of the Temple George Herbert, London: Pickering, 1841, p. 152,[11]
      A blustering night, a fair day.
    • 1793, William Wordsworth, “An Evening Walk, Addressed to a Young Lady,”[12]
      Theirs be these holms untrodden, still, and green,
      Where leafy shades fence off the blustering gale,
      And breathes in peace the lily of the vale!
    • 1917, Siegfried Sassoon, “A Poplar and the Moon” in The Old Huntsman and Other Poems, London: William Heinemann, p. 86,[13]
      But May, with slumbrous nights, must pass;
      And blustering winds will strip the tree.
    • 1963, “There’s Nothing to Be Sorry For,” Time, 20 December, 1963,[14]
      They ripped out the phone, took Sinatra outside and disappeared into a blustering snowstorm.



  1. present participle of bluster