Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

burgeon

verb bur·geon \ˈbər-jən\

Simple Definition of burgeon

  • : to grow or develop quickly

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of burgeon

  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 a :  to send forth new growth (as buds or branches) :  sprout b :  bloom

  3. 2 :  to grow and expand rapidly :  flourish

Examples of burgeon in a sentence

  1. The market for collectibles has burgeoned in recent years.

  2. <the trout population in the stream is burgeoning now that the water is clean>



Did You Know?

Burgeon comes from the Middle English word burjonen, which is from Anglo-French burjuner; both mean "to bud or sprout." "Burgeon" is often used figuratively, as when P.G. Wodehouse used it in Joy in the Morning: "I weighed this. It sounded promising. Hope began to burgeon." Usage commentators have objected to the use of "burgeon" to mean "to flourish" or "to grow rapidly," insisting that any figurative use should stay true to the word's earliest literal meaning and distinguish budding or sprouting from subsequent growing. But the sense of "burgeon" that indicates growing or expanding and prospering (as in "the burgeoning music scene" or "the burgeoning international market") has been in established use for decades, and is, in fact, the most common use of "burgeon" today.

Variants of burgeon

also bourgeon \ˈbər-jən\

Origin of burgeon

Middle English burjonen, from Anglo-French burjuner, from burjun bud, from Vulgar Latin *burrion-, burrio, from Late Latin burra fluff, shaggy cloth


First Known Use: 14th century

Rhymes with burgeon



Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up burgeon? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a timid, meek, or unassertive person

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

alt-5746713d76276

Which of these is a synonym of nonplus?

perplex disapprove soothe reduce
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ