: a branch of a tree
especially : a main branch
boughed adjective

Example Sentences

a tree bough fell on my car during the windstorm
Recent Examples on the Web Add some pizzazz to your garland display by allowing the ends of the bough to drape gracefully on the floor. Alyssa Gautieri, Good Housekeeping, 8 Nov. 2022 Stuntman Hurd McClellan had strapped on a bulletproof vest and swung like a pendulum suspended from a tree bough as news accounts said Semmelmeyer shot him several times without mishap. Patt Morrisoncolumnist, Los Angeles Times, 31 Jan. 2023 Orangutans have been known to repel insects by waving a bough. National Geographic, 12 Jan. 2023 For those who prefer traditional Christmas decor, this 9-foot bough is an excellent choice for giving your doorframe or porch columns a classic look. Rachel Klein, Popular Mechanics, 18 Nov. 2022 To make it, simply weave together ribbon, lights and an artificial bough. Alyssa Gautieri, Good Housekeeping, 8 Nov. 2022 Two winning tickets were bough in New York, while the other winners were purchased in Florida, Georgia, Ohio and Virginia. Chris Sims, The Courier-Journal, 2 Nov. 2022 To feed sparrows and finches, hang this Droll Yankees feeder up on a tree bough. Susan Cosier, WSJ, 29 July 2022 The leafy bough was followed a millisecond later by a squirrel. John Kelly, Washington Post, 30 May 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bough.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English, shoulder, bough, from Old English bōg; akin to Old High German buog shoulder, Greek pēchys forearm

First Known Use

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of bough was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near bough

Cite this Entry

“Bough.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition


: a branch of a tree
especially : a main branch
boughed adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on bough

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