Definition of bluster in US English:



[no object]
  • 1Talk in a loud, aggressive, or indignant way with little effect.

    ‘you threaten and bluster, but won't carry it through’
    with direct speech ‘“I don't care what he says,” I blustered’
    • ‘He blustered and ranted, and I merely watched him like a parent and a child with a temper.’
    • ‘‘Well, I'm sorry,’ I blustered, ‘But I really don't have any more change.’’
    • ‘He has been blustering for decades that you can control people if you just hit them hard enough and cow them.’
    • ‘‘Very, very few,’ Clarke finally blustered, to a snort from his interviewer.’
    • ‘And when he finally appeared, he blustered and brayed, losing none of the stonewalling qualities that had marked his time in politics.’
    • ‘‘Yeah, but, there's not much work out there for people in your field at the moment, something might come along next week that would be great for you and you'd miss out,’ he blusters.’
    • ‘Howard blustered about mad officials meddling in people's lives and undermining plain common sense and individual responsibility.’
    • ‘He cussed and blustered and took the second option.’
    • ‘The more they blustered, the more unconvincing they sounded.’
    • ‘The government blustered, threatened, and finally publicly admitted that the students were right.’
    • ‘‘This is the end of phase one of this fight,’ he blusters, ‘but the fight will go on and we will be in it together.’’
    • ‘I bet if I excused myself to go to the bathroom, he would still be blustering when I got back.’
    • ‘I blustered on for a bit, but after a while I had to admit that when you thought about it - as opposed to shooting from the lip - it did make sense.’
    • ‘When governments bluster, then citizens grow powerful.’
    • ‘Jay started blustering around telling anyone who'd listen, and there weren't many volunteers, that the mess from the earlier food fight would have to be cleared up.’
    • ‘Although he blustered about a ‘show trial’ and a ‘kangaroo court’, he was devastated to be thrown out of the party.’
    • ‘‘Well,’ she blusters, ‘we've tried to add more depth and twists to our styles and fits to reinvent the market for younger customers.’’
    • ‘‘Young chap over there,’ he blusters, gesturing towards the panoramic windows with his drink.’
    • ‘My own view would be to let him bluster, let him rant and rave all he wants, and let that be a matter between he and his own country.’
    • ‘He blustered on about my trespassing gall, how I'd unsettled his half-starving cattle.’
    rant, thunder
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    1. 1.1 (of a storm, wind, or rain) blow or beat fiercely and noisily.
      ‘a winter gale blustered against the sides of the house’
      • ‘A high wind blustered around the house and roared in the chimney.’
      • ‘The arctic wind blustering over the Baltic Sea is biting, teeth-chattering cold.’
      • ‘The weather begins to turn foul, with high winds and blustering rainsqualls, and because we laid over a day at the Judith to swim and loaf we begin to feel pressed to make time.’
      • ‘The only sounds we could hear were the blustering wind, and fluttering paper pressing against ruined hedges and walls.’
      • ‘The unpredictable Missouri weather lived up to its formidable reputation as it blustered all week.’
      • ‘The rain blusters under the roof and I think I feel the bridge collapsing under me.’
      • ‘By now, though, the wind was gathering itself for a grand, blustering, trouserflapping finale and the last four holes would be brutal.’
      • ‘A draught from Antarctica blustered across the airfield.’
      • ‘Throughout the blustering winds parting the tall grass, a figure darted through the brush, and just like that moved as fast as the bolts of lightening above.’
      • ‘When the blustering wind and swirling snow make sledding and building snowmen feel like work, ditch your icy mittens and spend the afternoon by a warm stove, sipping hot chocolate and munching on cookies.’
      • ‘The burglar causes me to bark, that and the sheer pleasure of resounding, when the torches flare and the winds bluster.’
      • ‘The wind is blustering through the trees outside, and every so often assails the outside walls of my house as if testing their fortitude.’
      • ‘The lake's deep green coloration derives from its high concentration of cobalt and other minerals, and is particularly striking when the frequent winds bluster the surface into a froth.’
      • ‘Anyway, this river just happens to be where the climate is all windy and blustering so the currents lap at you and force you to go into the opposite direction, no matter how hard you try to fight against it.’
      • ‘The only draw back on that evening was the blustering wind, which with the seven pound mainline I was using, made the almost weightless end tackle difficult to cast more than about fifteen yards.’
      • ‘The grass on the top was long and swayed in the winds that blustered over the downs.’
      • ‘A hot wind blustered up the track, informing her that the train was arriving.’
      • ‘The wind blustered as she made her way to the quiet edge of the garden.’
      • ‘The patio doors rattled and shook as the wind blustered and howled.’
      • ‘Fur stroked against his nose as several other dogs joined them behind the sled, the only thing that protected them from the blustering wind.’
      blow fiercely, blast, gust, storm, roar, rush
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  • Loud, aggressive, or indignant talk with little effect.

    ‘their threats contained a measure of bluster’
    • ‘The answer, it turns out, has something to do with excess humbug production and a decline in the exchange rate between bluster and bombast.’
    • ‘Residents said they dismissed the crowing as bluster, but noticed a dramatic change in his life in ensuing weeks.’
    • ‘The bluster, the straining for effect, the attempt to live up to a grandiose reputation of their own making - all these are absent.’
    • ‘Bravado, bluster, and empty threats were, after all, only useful to a certain degree.’
    • ‘Self-reference - not to speak of bluster or bragging - was at the zero level, as were all other forms of showmanship.’
    • ‘No amount of imperial bluster, disciplined armies or powerful artillery trains could impress these hardened tribes.’
    • ‘The first was its obvious lunacy, the immensity of the concept ‘millennium’ causing much bluster in pundits and presenters alike as it became clear the public had absolutely ignored it.’
    • ‘Privately, some government officials dismiss the reaction as bluster, exaggerating the impact to win a better deal for the company.’
    • ‘The overriding impression is one of mayhem, machismo, bluster and braggadocio.’
    • ‘They are good at justifying their actions with bluster and obfuscation so that it sounds like they had no choice and that ‘it was for our own good’ rather than the reality which is that it is for their own good and their egos.’
    • ‘The rest of the speech consisted largely of jingoistic bluster and attempts at political intimidation.’
    • ‘It is my belief that if the majority of ratepayers adopted this fair and reasonable action we would regain our status and rights, put an end to the usual city council bluster and, most importantly, see a return of public accountability.’
    • ‘If he did he'd have surely come up with better arguments than bluster and bombast.’
    • ‘For all their bluster and bombast, each display of physical power proves in the end to be ineffectual.’
    • ‘Funny how these things quickly deteriorate into name calling and bluster when met with the opposite viewpoint.’
    • ‘The children are true to their later personalities as teens: Freddie is full of bluster and bravado, Daphne is girly and vain, and Velma is nerdy.’
    • ‘I have the suspicion that all their albums sound exactly the same, though - and that all of the songs are really the same minor-key psuedo-tuneful bluster.’
    • ‘Despite this, the cast members manage to make each character a believable one, with an individual personality, and show that beneath the bravado and bluster and laddish behaviour, there lurks a decent human being.’
    • ‘‘Their bluster had gone on for hours,’ Edmond mutters.’
    • ‘The ‘all options’ caveat refers to action short of war, if it isn't in fact merely bluster, which I think more likely.’
    ranting, hectoring, thundering, threatening, threats, bullying, domineering
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Late Middle English: ultimately imitative.