follow Dictionary.com

It’s about time. We are now on Instagram!

billow

[bil-oh] /ˈbɪl oʊ/
noun
1.
a great wave or surge of the sea.
2.
any surging mass:
billows of smoke.
verb (used without object)
3.
to rise or roll in or like billows; surge.
4.
to swell out, puff up, etc., as by the action of wind:
flags billowing in the breeze.
verb (used with object)
5.
to make rise, surge, swell, or the like:
A sudden wind billowed the tent alarmingly.
Origin
1545-1555
1545-55; < Old Norse bylgja wave, cognate with Middle Low German bulge; akin to Old English gebylgan to anger, provoke
Related forms
underbillow, verb (used without object)
Synonyms
1. swell, breaker, crest, roller, whitecap.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for underbillow

billow

/ˈbɪləʊ/
noun
1.
a large sea wave
2.
a swelling or surging mass, as of smoke or sound
3.
a large atmospheric wave, usually in the lee of a hill
4.
(pl) (poetic) the sea itself
verb
5.
to rise up, swell out, or cause to rise up or swell out
Derived Forms
billowing, adjective, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Old Norse bylgja; related to Swedish bōlja, Danish bölg, Middle High German bulge; see bellow, belly
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 underbillow

billow

n.

1550s, perhaps older in dialectal use, from Old Norse bylgja "a wave, a billow," from Proto-Germanic *bulgjan (cf. Middle High German bulge "billow, bag"), from PIE *bhelgh- "to swell" (see belly (n.)).

v.

1590s, from billow (n.). Related: Billowed; billowing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for billow

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for underbillow

0
0
Scrabble Words With Friends