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or bourgeon

[bur-juh n] /ˈbɜr dʒən/
verb (used without object)
to grow or develop quickly; flourish:
The town burgeoned into a city. He burgeoned into a fine actor.
to begin to grow, as a bud; put forth buds, shoots, etc., as a plant (often followed by out, forth).
verb (used with object)
to put forth, as buds.
a bud; sprout.
Origin of burgeon
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
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. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for burgeoning
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • She was overcome with shame and with the mystery of her own burgeoning womanhood.

    Martin Eden Jack London
  • There was a burgeoning within him of strange feelings and unwonted impulses.

    White Fang Jack London
  • At eighteen one does so pathetically try to feed the burgeoning life with the husks of polite accomplishment.

  • Something inside him was changing, burgeoning in strange and disturbing growth.

    Pet Farm Roger Dee
  • Just as the spring brought forth a burgeoning activity, so did things happen with a rush in the fall.

    Frying Pan Farm Elizabeth Brown Pryor
British Dictionary definitions for burgeoning


often foll by forth or out. (of a plant) to sprout (buds)
(intransitive; often foll by forth or out) to develop or grow rapidly; flourish
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 burgeoning



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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