\ˈbrau̇z \
browsed; browsing

Definition of browse 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a of an animal : to eat (tender shoots, twigs, leaves of trees and shrubs, etc.) : to consume as browse (see browse entry 2 sense 1) browsing thistles

b : graze

2 : to look over casually : skim browsing the want ads

3 computers : to access (a network) by means of a browser

intransitive verb

1a of an animal : to feed on or as if on tender shoots, twigs, and leaves of trees and shrubs : to feed on or as if on browse

b : graze cows browsing in the pasture

2a : to skim through a book reading passages that catch the eye

b : to look over or through an aggregate of things casually especially in search of something of interest browsing through the store's magazine section



Definition of browse (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : tender shoots, twigs, and leaves of trees and shrubs used by animals for food

2 : an act or instance of browsing a quick browse through the want ads

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from browse


browsable \ ˈbrau̇-​zə-​bəl \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for browse

Synonyms: Verb

dip, glance, glimpse, glint, peek, skim

Antonyms: Verb

gaze, stare

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of browse in a Sentence


Several customers were browsing in the bookstore. He was browsing the want ads in the newspaper. cows browsing in the pasture
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Fernandes, browsing for a good deal on one of the famous yellow shirts in Saara, agrees. Sebastian Smith,, "Brazil fans mostly unenthusiastic ahead of World Cup," 25 May 2018 Hungry patrons browsing for lunch amid a gaggle of food trucks might not think their choice of a steak sandwich, curry, falafel or pho is a matter of chance. Justin Wm. Moyer, Washington Post, "‘Disastrous’: New D.C. rule limiting food truck entries in lottery irks vendors," 12 Apr. 2018 The wasp then wanders off to browse nearby real estate for a suitable burrow, while the cockroach remains rooted in place, engaged in a strange ritual of frenetic preening. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, "Five Real Life Wasp Superpowers Not in Ant-Man and the Wasp," 22 Mar. 2018 When your ears are ready for a rest, browse for finds at Ernest Tubb Record Shop (615-255-7503, and then maybe even get fitted for some country kicks at Boot Barn (615-742-9780, Sarah Rodman,, "The music lover’s ultimate guide to visiting Nashville," 15 Mar. 2018 More than 90 percent said that browsing for apps, texting, and emailing were distracting. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "Distracted driving: Everyone hates it, but most of us do it, study finds," 16 Feb. 2018 Tap or click here to learn how to browse the web anonymously. Kim Komando, Fox News, "Stop robocalls, free TV, anonymous browsing and more: Tech Q&A," 7 July 2018 Put out a few pintxos on platters, for guests to browse at their own pace. Jonah Miller, WSJ, "Throw a Summer Party the Effortless Spanish Way," 6 July 2018 Attendees will be able to browse the Children’s Pavilion and Author Alley, which will showcase a variety of books, illustrations and poetry. Olivia Ralph,, "Olivia's Report: U-T to host second annual San Diego Festival of Books," 5 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Stars of the park include the big cats (bobcats, lynx, and cougar), roly-poly black bears, and moose that munch all manner of browse, unperturbed by squealing youngsters. Patricia Harris And David Lyon,, "Goin’ up the country: The rustic appeal of Maine’s Route 26," 21 June 2018 After a browse there, the art walk proceeds on to the Mexican Cultural Center and a reception inside the Mexican General Consulate building. Brittany Martin, Los Angeles Magazine, "10 Fun, Free Things to Do in L.A. This May," 1 May 2018 In contrast, the surrounding hillside is dreamily serene: A modest herd of cattle browses in one field, clusters of tups (rams) and ewes with lambs in the others. Kieran Dodds, Smithsonian, "Britain’s Lake District Was Immortalized by Beatrix Potter, But Is Its Future in Peril?," 20 Apr. 2018 Sip cocktails and nibble on party snacks as your browse and get inspired., "Say 'I Do' to these 18 Northeast Ohio wedding events in 2018," 9 Jan. 2018 The best option is to give them more of the winter foods they are already adapted to eating - winter browse. Evan Macdonald,, "No one harmed in Christmas house fire in Broadview Heights," 25 Dec. 2017 Touchdown in Lathrop led me straight to Enchanted Frog for a nice relaxing browse through this mystical antique store. kansascity, "Where the bridge forks: two roads to two very different winter day trips | The Kansas City Star," 13 Dec. 2017 In fact, the zoo gets much of its browse from a super-secret Honda test track outside of Columbus that’s surrounded by lush wetland vegetation. Jason Bittel, Smithsonian, "When Disaster Strikes, the Zoo Must Go On," 11 Sep. 2017 Their first-ever permanent brick-and-mortar location is basically an IRL browse through Sara Tardiff, ELLE Decor, "Goop Has Officially Opened Its First Permanent Shop And It's Every Lifestyle Blogger's Dream," 18 Sep. 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of browse


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a


1523, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for browse


Middle English brouusen, probably from Anglo-French brouts browse entry 2


probably modification of Anglo-French brouts, plural of brout sprout, of Germanic origin; akin to Old Saxon brustian to sprout, and perhaps to Old English brēost breast — more at breast

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about browse

Statistics for browse

Last Updated

25 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for browse

The first known use of browse was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for browse



English Language Learners Definition of browse

: to look at many things in a store, in a newspaper, etc., to see if there is something interesting or worth buying

: to use a special program (called a browser) to find and look at information on the Internet

of an animal : to eat grass, plants, etc.


\ˈbrau̇z \
browsed; browsing

Kids Definition of browse

1 : to read or look in a casual way We went in the shop to browse.

2 : to nibble young shoots and foliage browsing deer

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on browse

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


by force of circumstances

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


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


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!