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burrow

[bur-oh, buhr-oh] /ˈbɜr oʊ, ˈbʌr oʊ/
noun
1.
a hole or tunnel in the ground made by a rabbit, fox, or similar animal for habitation and refuge.
2.
a place of retreat; shelter or refuge.
verb (used without object)
3.
to make a hole or passage in, into, or under something.
4.
to lodge in a burrow.
5.
to hide.
6.
to proceed by or as if by digging.
verb (used with object)
7.
to put a burrow into (a hill, mountainside, etc.).
8.
to hide (oneself), as in a burrow.
9.
to make by or as if by burrowing:
We burrowed our way through the crowd.
Origin of burrow
late Middle English
1325-1375
1325-75; Middle English borow, earlier burh, apparently gradational variant of late Middle English beri burrow, variant of earlier berg refuge, Old English gebeorg, derivative of beorgan to protect; akin to Old English burgen grave, i.e., place of protection for a body; see bury
Related forms
burrower, noun
unburrowed, adjective
Can be confused
borough, burro, burrow.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for burrowing
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Craig, his coat and waistcoat off, his detachable cuffs on the floor, was burrowing into masses of huge law-books.

  • From his experience, Ricardo declared that man was not a burrowing beast.

    Victory Joseph Conrad
  • Grim was almost caught two or three times, and only saved herself by burrowing into the mud, and letting the net pass over her.

  • burrowing in the ground in the late fall they remain there all winter.

    Pathfinder Alan Douglas
  • For a moment she struggled, burrowing her head into his coat; there was a good deal of burrowing and not much struggling.

    The Good Comrade Una L. Silberrad
  • Fossorial: formed for or with the habit of digging or burrowing.

  • These burrowing men were the first permanent settlers in the mines north of the Illinois line, and called themselves "Badgers."

    Stories of the Badger State Reuben Gold Thwaites
British Dictionary definitions for burrowing

burrow

/ˈbʌrəʊ/
noun
1.
a hole or tunnel dug in the ground by a rabbit, fox, or other small animal, for habitation or shelter
2.
a small snug place affording shelter or retreat
verb
3.
to dig (a burrow) in, through, or under (ground)
4.
(intransitive) often foll by through. to move through by or as by digging: to burrow through the forest
5.
(intransitive) to hide or live in a burrow
6.
(intransitive) to delve deeply: he burrowed into his pockets
7.
to hide (oneself)
Derived Forms
burrower, noun
Word Origin
C13: probably a variant of borough
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 burrowing

burrow

n.

"rabbit-hole, fox-hole, etc.," c.1300, borewe, from Old English burgh "stronghold, fortress" (see borough); influenced by bergh "hill," and berwen "to defend, take refuge."

v.

c.1600, "to place in a burrow, from burrow (n.). Figuratively (e.g. to burrow (one's) head) by 1862. Intransitive sense, "to bore one's way into, penetrate" is from 1610s, originally figurative (literal sense, of animals, attested by 1771). Related: Burrowed; borrowing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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15
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