• (RP) IPA: /ˈpɹɒfə(ɹ)/
  • (GA) IPA: /ˈpɹɑfɚ/

proffer (plural proffers)

  1. An offer#Noun|offer make#Verb|made; something proposed for acceptance by another; a tender#Noun|tender.
    Synonyms: proposition
    • 1593, Philip Sidney, “The Fifth Booke”, in H[ugh] S[anford], editor, The Covntesse of Pembrokes Arcadia […] [The New Arcadia], London: Printed [by John Windet] for William Ponsonbie, OCLC 1049103286 ↗; republished in Albert Feuillerat, editor, The Last Part of The Countesse of Pembrokes Arcadia […] (Cambridge English Classics: The Complete Works of Sir Philip Sidney; II), Cambridge, Cambridgeshire: At the University Press, 1922, OCLC 496012517 ↗, page 156 ↗:
      [T]heir own eies wilbe perhaps more curious judges, out of hearesay they may have builded many conceites, which I can not perchaunce wil not performe, then wil undeserved repentance be a greater shame and injurie unto me, then their undeserved proffer, is honour.
    • 1828 May 14, [Walter Scott], chapter II, in Chronicles of the Canongate. Second Series. [...] In Three Volumes (The Fair Maid of Perth), volume I, Edinburgh: Printed [by Ballantyne and Co.] for Cadell and Co.; London: Simpkin and Marshall, OCLC 17487293 ↗, page 50 ↗:
      Her lips, man, her lips! and that's a proffer I would not make to every one who crosses my threshold. But, by good St Valentine, (whose holiday will dawn to-morrow,) I am so glad to see thee in the bonny city of Perth again, that it would be hard to tell the thing I could refuse thee.
    • 1886, George Bernard Shaw, chapter XIII, in Cashel Byron’s Profession. A Novel, London: The Modern Press, […], OCLC 903160 ↗, page 144 ↗:
      [H]ow, if you tell him this, will you make him understand that I say so as an act of justice, and not in the least as a proffer of affection?
  2. (obsolete) An attempt#Noun|attempt, an essay#Noun|essay.
    • 1577, Raphaell Holinshed, “Queene Marie”, in The Laste Volume of the Chronicles of England, Scotlande, and Irelande […], volume II, London: Imprinted for Iohn Hunne, OCLC 265432180 ↗, page 1725 ↗, column 2:
      [A]fter ſome reſiſtance with ſhotte and arrowes, and profer of onſet made by their horſemen, they were put to flight, [...]
    • 1627, [Francis Bacon], “III. Century. [Experiment in Consort Touching the Imitation of Sound.]”, in Sylua Syluarum: Or A Naturall Historie. In Ten Centuries. […], London: Published after the authors death, by VVilliam Rawley; printed by I[ohn] H[aviland and Augustine Mathewes] for William Lee […], OCLC 1044242069 ↗; Sylua Syluarum: Or A Naturall Historie. In Ten Centuries. […], 3rd edition, London: Published […] by VVilliam Rawley. Printed by J[ohn] H[aviland] for William Lee […], 1631, OCLC 1044372886 ↗, paragraph 236, [;view=1up;seq=82 page 64]:
      It is a Thing ſtrange in Nature, when it is attentiuely conſidered, How Children and ſome Birds, learne to imitate Speech. [...] It is true, that it is done with time, and by little and little, and with many Eſſayes and Proffers: But all this diſchargeth not the VVonder.
  • Italian: profferta
  • Russian: предложение

proffer (proffers, present participle proffering; past and past participle proffered)

  1. (transitive, reflexive) To offer#Verb|offer for acceptance; to propose to give#Verb|give; to make#Verb|make a tender#Noun|tender of.
    to proffer friendship, a gift, or services
    • 1607, [Barnabe Barnes], The Divils Charter: A Tragædie Conteining the Life and Death of Pope Alexander the Sixt. […], London: Printed by G[eorge] E[ld] for Iohn Wright, […], OCLC 1043018437 ↗, Act IV, scene iv ↗:
      Cæſar in this hath offered like himſelfe, / He proffereth to preſerue your towne vntouch'd: / Your goods, your wiues, your liues, your liberties.
    • 1823, [James Fenimore Cooper], chapter II, in The Pioneers, or The Sources of the Susquehanna; a Descriptive Tale. [...] In Two Volumes, volume I, New York, N.Y.: Published by Charles Wiley; J. Seymour, printer, OCLC 1076549695 ↗, page 24 ↗:
      The ministry proffered various civil offices, which yielded not only honour but profit; but he declined them all, with the chivalrous independence and loyalty that had marked his character through life.
    • 1851 November 13, Herman Melville, “The Street”, in Moby-Dick; or, The Whale, 1st American edition, New York, N.Y.: Harper & Brothers; London: Richard Bentley, OCLC 57395299 ↗, page 37 ↗:
      And in August, high in air, the beautiful and bountiful horse-chestnuts, candelabra-wise, proffer the passer-by their tapering upright cones of congregated blossoms.
  2. (transitive, obsolete) To attempt#Verb|attempt or essay#Verb|essay of one's own accord#Noun|accord; to undertake or propose to undertake.
    • 1667, John Milton, “Book II ↗”, in Paradise Lost. A Poem Written in Ten Books, London: Printed [by Samuel Simmons], and are to be sold by Peter Parker […] [a]nd by Robert Boulter […] [a]nd Matthias Walker, […], OCLC 228722708 ↗; republished as Paradise Lost in Ten Books: The Text Exactly Reproduced from the First Edition of 1667: […], London: Basil Montagu Pickering […], 1873, OCLC 230729554 ↗, lines 423–426:
      [N]one among the choice and prime / Of thoſe Heav'n-warring Champions could be found / So hardie as to proffer or accept / Alone the dreadful voyage; [...]