follow Dictionary.com

8 Wintry Words to Defrost Your Vocabulary

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
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. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for burrows
  • The farmers and their works are scarcely more obvious than woodchucks and their burrows.
  • These rats are nocturnal, and make their nests in ground burrows where they disappear during the day.
  • The farmers and their works are scarcely more obvious than woodchucks and their burrows.
  • Birds survived because a few of them happened to be sheltered in burrows or rock piles.
  • They live in these burrows, which can become extensive tunnel-and-chamber complexes.
  • Meerkat groups utilize several different burrows and move from one to another.
  • These playful rodents live in well-organized underground burrows called towns that can have populations in the thousands.
  • After the first frost, they retreat to their underground burrows and snooze until spring, drawing their sustenance from body fat.
  • Each plasmodium burrows into a different liver cell.
  • Skunks usually nest in burrows constructed by other animals, but they also live in hollow logs or even abandoned buildings.
British Dictionary definitions for burrows

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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for burrows

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
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for burrow

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for burrows

12
14
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with burrows