1

billow

play
noun bil·low \ˈbi-(ˌ)lō\

Definition of billow

  1. 1 :  wave; especially :  a great wave or surge of water the rolling billows of the sea

  2. 2 :  a rolling mass (as of flame or smoke) that resembles a high wave Billows of smoke poured out of the building. billows of fog

billowy

play \ˈbi-lə-wē\ adjective

Examples of billow in a sentence

  1. Billows of smoke poured out of the burning building.

  2. the rolling billows of the sea

Origin and Etymology of billow

Old Norse bylgja; akin to Old High German balg bag — more at belly


First Known Use: 1552


2

billow

verb bil·low

Definition of billow

  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 :  to rise or roll in waves or surges the billowing sea

  3. 2 :  to bulge or swell out (as through action of the wind) billowing clouds … the flags … billowed out in pride … — G. B. Oxnam

  4. transitive verb
  5. :  to cause to billow a field of burning grass billowing thick black clouds of smoke into the sky — Donald Windham

Examples of billow in a sentence

  1. the curtains in the open windows billowed in the summer wind

Origin and Etymology of billow

see 1billow


First Known Use: 1592


BILLOW Defined for English Language Learners

1

billow

play
noun bil·low \ˈbi-(ˌ)lō\

Definition of billow for English Language Learners

  • : a moving cloud or mass of smoke, steam, etc.

  • : a large wave


2

billow

verb bil·low

Definition of billow for English Language Learners

  • : to move as a large cloud or mass

  • : to be pushed outward by air

  • : to rise or roll in waves


BILLOW Defined for Kids

1

billow

play
noun bil·low \ˈbi-lō\

Definition of billow for Students

  1. 1 :  a large wave … the billows rose and fell unbroken. — Robert Louis Stevenson, Treasure Island

  2. 2 :  a moving cloud or mass (as of smoke or flame)


2

billow

play
verb bil·low

Definition of billow for Students

billowed

;

billowing

  1. 1 :  to rise or roll in large waves the billowing ocean

  2. 2 :  to move as a large cloud or mass Smoke billowed from the chimney.

  3. 3 :  to bulge or swell out Sails billowed in the breeze.



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