Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To drink (a beverage) heartily: quaffed the ale with gusto.
  • intransitive v. To drink a liquid heartily: quaffed from the spring.
  • n. A hearty draft of liquid.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To drink or imbibe, especially with vigour.
  • n. The act of quaffing, a deep draught.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To drink with relish; to drink copiously of; to swallow in large draughts.
  • intransitive v. To drink largely or luxuriously.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To drink; swallow in large draughts; drink of copiously or greedily.
  • To drink largely or luxuriously.
  • n. The act of quaffing; also, the quantity of liquor drunk at once; a draught.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a hearty draft
  • v. to swallow hurriedly or greedily or in one draught

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Origin unknown.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Attested since the mid 16th century, of uncertain origin. Suggestions include connection with Irish Gaelic cauch ("cup") (whence Scots quaich, queff). The noun is derived from the verb, since the later 16th century.

Examples

Comments

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  • I have just listened to a half dozen audio clips that all pronounce it to rhyme with off or cough. This is bad news for my limericks.

    In my native dialect, the fast disappearing one of eastern New England, laugh and half might have the vowel that pterodactyl hears in quaff.

    January 21, 2017

  • how about cough

    or

    old rhyme book at https://books.google.ca/books?id=leoIAAAAQAAJ&dq=rhyme%20dictionary&pg=PA188 and page 206

    the syrup he did quaff for his 5 year cough

    January 21, 2017

  • For rhymes with quaff see comments at sclaff and bibliotaph.

    January 21, 2017

  • Does anything rhyme with quaff?

    I don't think it rhymes with off. To my ear, quaff and off have the same vowels as la and law, respectively.

    January 21, 2017

  • This seems to mostly happen to potions.

    September 4, 2011