a nearly spherical body of gas contained in a liquid.
a small globule of gas in a thin liquid envelope.
a globule of air or gas, or a globular vacuum, contained in a solid.
anything that lacks firmness, substance, or permanence; an illusion or delusion.
an inflated speculation, especially if fraudulent: The real-estate bubble ruined many investors.
the act or sound of bubbling.
a spherical or nearly spherical canopy or shelter; dome: The bombing plane bristled with machine-gun bubbles. A network of radar bubbles stretches across northern Canada.
a domelike structure, usually of inflated plastic, used to enclose a swimming pool, tennis court, etc.
Informal. a protected, exempt, or unique area, industry, etc.: The oasis is a bubble of green in the middle of the desert.
an area that can be defended, protected, patrolled, etc., or that comes under one's jurisdiction: The carrier fleet's bubble includes the Hawaiian Islands.
a sudden, small, temporary change or divergence from a trend: In May there was a bubble in car sales, with three percent more being sold than last year.
verb (used without object), bubbled, bubbling.
to form, produce, or release bubbles; effervesce.
to flow or spout with a gurgling noise; gurgle.
to boil: The tea bubbled in the pot.
to speak, move, issue forth, or exist in a lively, sparkling manner; exude cheer: The play bubbled with songs and dances.
to seethe or stir, as with excitement: His mind bubbles with plans and schemes.
verb (used with object), bubbled, bubbling.
to cause to bubble; make bubbles in.
Archaic. to cheat; deceive; swindle.
Verb phrases
bubble over, to become lively: The last time I saw her she was bubbling over with enthusiasm.

1350–1400; Middle English bobel (noun); cognate with Middle Dutch bobbel, Middle Low German bubbele, Sw bubbla

bubbleless, adjective
bubblelike, adjective
bubblingly, adverb

babble, Babel, bauble, bubble.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
bubble (ˈbʌbəl)
1.  a thin film of liquid forming a hollow globule around air or a gas: a soap bubble
2.  a small globule of air or a gas in a liquid or a solid, as in carbonated drinks, glass, etc
3.  the sound made by a bubbling liquid
4.  something lacking substance, stability, or seriousness
5.  an unreliable scheme or enterprise
6.  a dome, esp a transparent glass or plastic one
vb (; often foll by over)
7.  to form or cause to form bubbles
8.  (intr) to move or flow with a gurgling sound
9.  to overflow (with excitement, anger, etc)
10.  (Scot) (intr) to snivel; blubber
[C14: probably of Scandinavian origin; compare Swedish bubbla, Danish boble, Dutch bobbel, all of imitative origin]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

early 14c. (n.), mid-15c. (v.), perhaps from M.Du. bobbel (n.) and/or M.L.G. bubbeln (v.), all probably of echoic origin. Bubble bath first recorded 1949. Of financial schemes originally in South Sea Bubble (1590s), on notion of "fragile and insubstantial."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

bubble definition

A period of wild speculation in which the price of a commodity or stock or an entire market is inflated far beyond its real value. Bubbles are said to “burst” when a general awareness of the folly emerges and the price drops.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
Even more dramatic changes in education are bubbling up at the college level.
The bubbling torrent is full of fecal microorganisms responsible for typhoid,
  cholera and amoebic dysentery.
Maybe he was attracted to the pots of noodles bubbling over braziers at
There is food: bubbling mutton kebabs seared over red-hot braziers.
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