Meaning of BUFFER in English

/ ˈbʌfə(r); NAmE / noun , verb

■ noun


buffer (against sth) | buffer (between sth and sth) a thing or person that reduces a shock or protects sb/sth against difficulties :

Support from family and friends acts as a buffer against stress.

She often had to act as a buffer between father and son.

a buffer state (= a small country between two powerful states that helps keep peace between them)

a buffer zone (= an area of land between two opposing armies or countries)


( BrE ) one of two round metal devices on the front or end of a train, or at the end of a railway / railroad track, that reduce the shock if the train hits sth


( computing ) an area in a computer's memory where data can be stored for a short time


(also old ˈbuffer ) ( old-fashioned , BrE ) a silly old man


see hit verb

■ verb [ vn ]


to reduce the harmful effects of sth :

to buffer the effects of stress on health


buffer sb (against sth) to protect sb from sth :

They tried to buffer themselves against problems and uncertainties.


( computing ) ( of a computer ) to hold data for a short time before using it



noun senses 1 to 2 and verb senses 1 to 2 mid 19th cent.: probably from obsolete buff (verb), imitative of the sound of a blow to a soft body.

noun sense 3 mid 18th cent.: probably from obsolete buff (imitative of the sound of a blow to a soft body), or from dialect buff stutter, splutter (possibly the same word). In late Middle English buffer had the sense stammerer .

Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Оксфордский английский словарь для изучающик язык на продвинутом уровне.