busy

[biz-ee]
adjective, busier, busiest.
1.
actively and attentively engaged in work or a pastime: busy with her work.
2.
not at leisure; otherwise engaged: He couldn't see any visitors because he was busy.
3.
full of or characterized by activity: a busy life.
4.
(of a telephone line) in use by a party or parties and not immediately accessible.
5.
officious; meddlesome; prying.
6.
ornate, disparate, or clashing in design or colors; cluttered with small, unharmonious details; fussy: The rug is too busy for this room.
verb (used with object), busied, busying.
7.
to keep occupied; make or keep busy: In summer, he busied himself keeping the lawn in order.

Origin:
before 1000; Middle English busi, bisi, Old English bysig, bisig; cognate with Middle Low German, Middle Dutch besich, Dutch bezig

nonbusy, adjective
overbusy, adjective
superbusy, adjective
unbusy, adjective
well-busied, adjective


1. assiduous, hard-working. Busy, diligent, industrious imply active or earnest effort to accomplish something, or a habitual attitude of such earnestness. Busy means actively employed, temporarily or habitually: a busy official. Diligent suggests earnest and constant effort or application, and usually connotes fondness for, or enjoyment of, what one is doing: a diligent student. Industrious often implies a habitual characteristic of steady and zealous application, often with a definite goal: an industrious clerk working for promotion. 2. occupied, employed, working.


1. indolent. 2. unoccupied.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
busy (ˈbɪzɪ)
 
adj , busier, busiest
1.  actively or fully engaged; occupied
2.  crowded with or characterized by activity: a busy day
3.  chiefly (US), (Canadian) (of a room, telephone line, etc) in use; engaged
4.  overcrowded with detail: a busy painting
5.  meddlesome; inquisitive; prying
 
vb , busier, busiest, busies, busying, busied
6.  (tr) to make or keep (someone, esp oneself) busy; occupy
 
[Old English bisig; related to Middle Dutch besich, perhaps to Latin festīnāre to hurry]
 
'busyness
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

busy
O.E. bisig "careful, anxious, busy, occupied," cognate with O.Du. bezich, Low Ger. besig; no known connection with any other Germanic or Indo-European language. Still pronounced as in M.E., but for some unclear reason the spelling shifted to -u- in 15c. The word was a euphemism for "sexually active"
in 17c. Of telephone lines, 1893. In M.E., sometimes with a sense of "prying, meddlesome," preserved in busybody. Busy work is first recorded 1910. The verb is O.E. bisgian.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

busy

In addition to the idioms beginning with busy, also see get busy.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
He's busy negotiating with potential investors.
Many publishers said they were busy with international activity.
Here are some other good choices for busy gardeners.
On a busy night, the hospital pharmacy can have 500 or 600 prescriptions to
  fill.
Idioms & Phrases
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