—n. 1. one of the short, stiff, coarse hairs of certain animals, esp. hogs, used extensively in making brushes.
2. anything resembling these hairs.
—v.i. 1. to stand or rise stiffly, like bristles.
2. to erect the bristles, as an irritated animal (often fol. by up): The hog bristled up. 3. to become rigid with anger or irritation: The man bristled when I asked him to move. 4. to be thickly set or filled with something suggestive of bristles: The plain bristled with bayonets. The project bristled with difficulties. 5. to be visibly roused or stirred (usually fol. by up).
—v.t. 1. to erect like bristles: The rooster bristled his crest. 2. to furnish with a bristle or bristles.
3. to make bristly.