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burgeon

or bourgeon

[bur-juh n] /ˈbɜr dʒən/
verb (used without object)
1.
to grow or develop quickly; flourish:
The town burgeoned into a city. He burgeoned into a fine actor.
2.
to begin to grow, as a bud; put forth buds, shoots, etc., as a plant (often followed by out, forth).
verb (used with object)
3.
to put forth, as buds.
noun
4.
a bud; sprout.
Origin of burgeon
1275-1325
1275-1325; (noun) Middle English burjon, burion; shoot, bud < Anglo-French burjun, burg(e)on; Old French burjon < Vulgar Latin *burriōne(m), accusative of *burriō, derivative of Late Latin burra wool, fluff (compare bourrée, bureau), presumably from the down covering certain buds; (v.) Middle English burg(e)onen, borgen < Anglo-French, Old French, derivative of the noun
Synonyms
1. bloom, blossom, mushroom, expand.
Usage note
The two senses of burgeon, “to bud” (The maples are burgeoning) and “to grow or flourish” (The suburbs around the city have been burgeoning under the impact of commercial growth), date from the 14th century. Today the sense “to grow or flourish” is the more common. Occasionally, objections are raised to the use of this sense, perhaps because of its popularity in journalistic writing.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for burgeon
Historical Examples
  • Unless a writer feels free, things will not come to him, he cannot burgeon on any subject whatsoever.

  • As I drained the glass now, new life seemed to burgeon within me.

    Right Ho, Jeeves P. G. Wodehouse
  • Her heart expanded, her soul seemed to burgeon and to bloom.

    Basil Everman Elsie Singmaster
  • Then the tree began to bud and burgeon with gifts, and the rare glories of colour crept in upon the snows of winter.

    The Art of Entertaining M. E. W. Sherwood
  • I looked down, cursing myself that I had dared to suspect she could burgeon only in the affluence of satins.

    The Portal of Dreams Charles Neville Buck
British Dictionary definitions for burgeon

burgeon

/ˈbɜːdʒən/
verb
1.
often foll by forth or out. (of a plant) to sprout (buds)
2.
(intransitive; often foll by forth or out) to develop or grow rapidly; flourish
noun
3.
a bud of a plant
Word Origin
C13: from Old French burjon, perhaps ultimately from Late Latin burra shaggy cloth; from the downiness of certain buds
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for burgeon
v.

early 14c., "grow, sprout, blossom," from Anglo-French burjuner, Old French borjoner "to bud, sprout," from borjon "a bud, shoot, pimple" (Modern French bourgeon), of uncertain origin. Perhaps from Vulgar Latin *burrionem (nominative *burrio), from Late Latin burra "flock of wool," itself of uncertain origin. Some sources (Kitchin, Gamillscheg) say either the French word or the Vulgar Latin one is from Germanic. The English verb is perhaps instead a native development from burjoin (n.) "a bud" (c.1300), from Old French. Related: Burgeoned; burgeoning.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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