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Related to bluff: bluff body

bluff (one's) way

To achieve or accomplish something through deceit or by making a false display. (Usually followed by "into," "out of," or "through.") We tried to bluff our way into the party, but we were immediately recognized as freshmen and told to leave. My brother is a good liar, but even he couldn't bluff his way out of that speeding ticket. I managed to bluff my way through the presentation with a lot of vague ideas and corporate buzz words.
See also: bluff, way

bluff (one's) way into (something)

To gain access to a particular place or thing through deceit. We tried to bluff our way into the party, but we were immediately recognized as freshmen and told to leave.
See also: bluff, way

bluff (one's) way out of (something)

To escape a negative situation through deceit. My brother is a good liar, but even he couldn't bluff his way out of that speeding ticket. I bluffed my way out of taking the test by saying I had a bad headache.
See also: bluff, of, out, way

bluff (one's) way through (something)

To use guesswork or a false display as a means of completing or accomplishing something. I managed to bluff my way through the presentation with a lot of vague ideas and corporate buzz words. I hadn't studied for the test, so I just bluffed my way through it.
See also: bluff, through, way

bluff (someone) into (something)

To mislead someone into doing something, holding some position, or making some decision, often by making a false promise or lying about the purported consequences or result. I used to be able to bluff my little sister into cleaning my room, but she's wary now since I never actually give her the candy I promise. Jeff tried to bluff management into giving him a raise by claiming he had several job offers elsewhere.
See also: bluff

bluff (someone) out of (something)

To mislead someone in order to take something from them. I can't believe Jon bluffed me out of ten bucks by claiming he was collecting money for charity.
See also: bluff, of, out

call (one's) bluff

1. To challenge someone to act on their threat or prove that their claim or boast is true, when one believes they are making a false claim or idle threat (i.e. bluffing). He insisted that he could run faster than me, but when I called his bluff, he suddenly said he had to go home.
2. To disprove a bluff. Whereas the first usage simply indicates a challenge, this usage indicates that the challenge resulted in the disproval. I don't know why he keeps making these outrageous claims. I've been calling his bluff for years and making him look like a fool.
See also: bluff, call

you can't bluff a bluffer

It is very difficult to fool someone who is experienced in the ways of fooling other people. I know Bill thinks he can keep up with these star poker players, but you can't bluff a bluffer—they'll see through him for sure!
See also: bluff
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

bluff one's way out (of something)

to get out of a difficult situation by deception or cunning. I will try to bluff my way out of this mess.
See also: bluff, out, way

bluff someone into something

to mislead or deceive someone into doing something. Are you trying to bluff me into giving up without a fight? I won't be bluffed into revealing the whereabouts of the safe.
See also: bluff

bluff someone out (of something)

to get something away from someone through deception. We bluffed her out of her share of the pie. I bluffed Liz out of her rightful turn to drive.
See also: bluff, out

call someone's bluff

to demand that someone prove a claim or is not being deceptive. All right, I'll call your bluff. Show me you can do it! Tom said, "You've made me really angry, and I'll punch you if you come any closer!" "Go ahead," said Bill, calling his bluff.
See also: bluff, call
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

call someone's bluff

Expose someone's deception, invite a showdown, as in I don't believe they have enough capital; I'm going to call their bluff. This term comes from poker, where bluffing (pretending) that one has better cards than one's opponents is an intrinsic part of the game, and calling someone's bluff means forcing them to show their cards. By the late 1800s it was being applied to other enterprises. Also see show one's hand.
See also: bluff, call
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

call someone's bluff

COMMON If someone has made a threat and you call their bluff, you tell them to do what they are threatening to do, knowing that they probably will not do it. Mr Lukanov warned that he would deal severely with any protest actions in the universities. Now that the students have called his bluff, it remains to be seen what Mr Lukanov can do. The Socialists have finally decided to call the opposition's bluff, and it looks as if they have succeeded. Note: In poker (= a card game), a player who is bluffing is playing as though they have good cards when in fact they have bad cards. If another player calls the first player's bluff, they increase their stake (=the amount of money that is risked) to the required amount and ask the first player to show their cards.
See also: bluff, call
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

call someone's bluff

challenge someone to carry out a stated intention, in the expectation of being able to expose it as a false pretence.
In the game of poker (which was formerly also known by the name of bluff ), calling someone's bluff meant making an opponent show their hand in order to reveal that its value was weaker than their heavy betting suggested.
See also: bluff, call
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

call somebody’s ˈbluff

give somebody the chance to do what they are threatening to do, because you believe they will not or cannot do it: Next time she offers her resignation, they’ll call her bluff and accept it.
If you call somebody’s bluff in the game of poker, you force them to show their cards.
See also: bluff, call
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

bluff (one's) way

To deceive someone or accomplish something by making a false display.
See also: bluff, way

call (someone's) bluff

To demand proof for or respond in a challenging way to the claims or threats of another that one presumes to be false.
See also: bluff, call
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

call someone's bluff, to

To uncover a deception, or challenge someone to carry out a threat or prove a dubious point. The term comes from poker, where the players bet as to who has the best poker hand of them all. To bluff is to bet on a hand one does not believe is the best; to call means to match a bet, that is, bet an equivalent amount. When the cards are uncovered, whoever has the best hand wins the entire pot (all the money the players have put up). The term is American in origin and dates, like American poker, from the early 1800s. It was being transferred to other pursuits by the late nineteenth century; “Where shall we be when that bluff is called,” reads an entry in the Congressional Record (March 1896).
See also: call, to
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
Caption: A bowed balcony, left photo, overlooks the lobby of the Hotel Pines in Pine Bluff. The photo inset above shows the ceramic mosaic floor tile that remains largely intact.
When you try to bluff at a big pot you can often find many players will be pot committed and less likely to relinquish their hand on the strength of your bet.
In the case of Saracen tax revenue, the balance would be split between Pine Bluff, 19.5 percent, and Jefferson County, 8 percent.
They would travel through Georgia while stopping at Shell Bluff. John described their visit to Shell Bluff as a scientist would, making entries of everything scientific in his journal.
Crews with Magnus Pacific of Roseville, Calif., will dig up and shift about 399,090 cubic yards of waste buried in the city's landfill, which was closed in 2007, upland from the edge of a 135-foot bluff to prevent it from falling into the Strait.
Stedman's Bluff overlooks the Bridal Veil Falls and American Falls.
Yaqub Youssef extended, on behalf of BLUFF's Executive Council, sincere thanks and gratitude to HRH Premier for his constant keenness to meet the aspirations of Bahraini workers and achieve their legitimate demands.
Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ: CHDN), a US-based company that owns and operates four Thoroughbred racing facilities, has announced the acquisition of the assets of Bluff Media, a US-based multimedia poker content, brand and publishing company.
Units must use a transaction code of CBR with a supplementary address of W41CE8 for Pine Bluff Arsenal.
Dallas Clean Energy McCommas Bluff LLC, a subsidiary of Clean Energy Fuels Corporation (Nasdaq: CLNE), has arranged a USD40.2m tax-exempt bond issuance.
According to Bluff, the takeover will provide a "seven-figure payout" to B&L's previous owners in the next four years.
Chaco and after in the northern San Juan; excavations at the Bluff Great House.
The Army Materiel Command (AMC) will transfer operational control of industrial activities at Pine Bluff Arsenal, Arkansas, from the Army Chemical Materials Agency (CMA) to the Army Joint Munitions Command (JMC), effective 1 October.
The most frequently asked questions about poker concern bluffing - or rather, when and when not to bluff. In truth, it's something to which there is no correct answer, although my rule is to bluff sparingly, mainly because I believe you can push your luck too far and bluffing can only be considered successful when you get away with it.