EnglishEdit

Alternative formsEdit

EtymologyEdit

Compare Old English gliffen, gliften (to look with fear at).

NounEdit

gliff (plural gliffs)

  1. (Britain, Scotland, dialect) A transient glance.
  2. (Britain, Scotland, dialect) An unexpected view of something that startles one.
  3. (Britain, Scotland, dialect) A sudden fright.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Sir Walter Scott to this entry?)
  4. (Britain, Scotland, dialect) A short moment.
  5. (US) A meaningless placeholder word used in certain standardized tests, for example,
    A beagle is a type of gliff.
    A. cat
    B. dog
    C. elephant
    D. tree
    (the correct answer is of course B, "dog.")

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for gliff in
Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)