English Language
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What's the meaning of Chuffed to bits?

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Answered 2012-09-27 15:40:54

Its English, ... meaning Pleased to bits!

It's used in England to express they are "Pleased to bits!"

It means that you are extremely happy, pleased.

Chuffed: (adjective, British informal slang) delighted.


Chuffed = pleased /satisfied. First used in this way in 1957, and is from the word 'chuff' from the mid-1800, meaning plump, chubby, pleased, happy.

'Chuff' was originally used to mean 'swollen with fat', hence 'chuff cheeks' (Old English) creates the image of someone with a chubby happy face. By extension, being 'chuffed' is comparable with the modern expression 'rolling about with laughter' someone clutching at their belly as they laugh vigorously, puffed up with laughter.

"I have been made fat with laughter" may have been an expression used at a time when being happy and being fat were closely related; being fat meant you had plenty of food, which was a happy state to be in compared with those with very little food who would be understandably unhappy.

And even for those without food, if they could 'have a good laugh', it was like food to them. 'to grow fat with laughter' is a common phrase.

'Here was a feast to make him fat with laughter' (*See FOOTNOTE) - from "The Elder Brother", by Beaumont & Fletcher, Act IV, Scene IV (quarto manuscript 1637)

And here is someone who is both physically fat AND laughing:

'The Priest shook in his fat with laughter' - "The Silence of the Valley", by Sean O'Faolain, short story in The Virginia Quarterly Review, 1947, page 219


Interestingly, from 1832, 'chuff' has also been used with a virtually opposite meaning in some dialects, i.e. "gruff, displeased, grumpy, unhappy'!

In addition, a 'chuff' can also mean a dull, coarse, heavy, or surly fellow; or a buffoon, or clownish person; 'chuff', a "rude fellow" (1400's)


* 'Fat with laughter', i.e. 'chuffed'

For more information, see Related links below.
Bursting with pleasure.

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