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  • enPR: fŭz, IPA(key): /fʌz/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ʌz

Etymology 1[edit]

Uncertain. Some dictionaries suggest a Germanic source; compare Low German fussig (loose; spongy), Dutch voos (unsound; rotten). Others, such as Webster's New College Dictionary, suggest a back-formation from fuzzy. The Oxford English Dictionary suggests, “Perhaps imitative of the action of blowing away light particles.”


fuzz (countable and uncountable, plural fuzzes)

  1. A frizzy mass of hair or fibre.
    • 1895, Hamlin Garland, Rose of Dutcher's Coolly, page 352:
      His cheeks were like peaches, with much the same sort of fuzz over them.
  2. Quality of an image that is unclear; a blurred image.
    • 2010, Iain Boyd Whyte, Beyond the Finite: The Sublime in Art and Science, New York: Oxford University Press, →ISBN:
      ...scientific advances happen more often at the frontier of representation, at the edge of resolution where an image dissolves into fuzz and blur.
  3. (computing) The random data used in fuzz testing.
    • 2008, Asoke Talukder, Manish Chaitanya, Architecting Secure Software Systems, Boca Raton: CRC Press, →ISBN, page 94:
      "Fuzz testing" or "fuzzing" is a technique for software testing that provides random data ("fuzz") to the inputs of a program.
  4. A distorted sound, especially from an electric guitar or other amplified instrument.
    • 1994, R.A. Penfold, Music Projects, Boston: New Tech, →ISBN, page 33:
      This gives a good soft clipping effect and a good fuzz sound.
  5. A state of befuddlement.
    • 1784, Jonathan Swift, “Journal to Stella”, in The works of the Rev. Dr. Jonathan Swift, page 54:
      I think I'm in a fuzz, and don't know what I ſay, I never ſaw the like.
    • 2016 February 10, Ally, “Signs of an Online Dating Scam”, in Christie Hartman Ph.D.[1], archived from the original on 26 October 2016, Comments:
      So I'm in a fuzz of not knowing what to do
Derived terms[edit]


fuzz (third-person singular simple present fuzzes, present participle fuzzing, simple past and past participle fuzzed)

  1. (transitive) To make fuzzy.
  2. (intransitive) To become fuzzy.
  3. (transitive, dated) To make drunk.
    • 2004, Quintin Jardine, Alarm Call, London: Headline, →ISBN:
      Or maybe my mind was just fuzzed with the drink.
  4. (computing) To test a software component by running it on randomly generated input.
    • 2012, Charlie Miller, Dion Blazakis, Dino DaiZovi, iOS Hacker's Handbook, page 172:
      Sulley works by fuzzing the first fuzzable field to be fuzzed. While it is iterating through all the values it wants to try for that field, all the other fields are untouched and remain at their default value.
  5. (intransitive, dated) To fly off in minute particles with a fizzing sound, like water from hot metal.
Derived terms[edit]


Etymology 2[edit]

Unknown. Godfrey Irwin (1930) suggests a possible connection to fuss, "over-particular", excessive bother.


fuzz (uncountable)

  1. (US, slang, with "the") The police, or any law enforcement agency.
Derived terms[edit]

  • Godfrey Irwin. 1930. American Tramp and Underworld Slang, New York, Sears. →OCLC

Etymology 3[edit]



  1. Misspelling of fuss.



fuzz m (uncountable)

  1. fuzz