buoy

noun
\ ˈbü-ē , ˈbȯi \

Definition of buoy 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : float sense 2 especially, nautical : a floating object moored to the bottom to mark a channel or something (such as a shoal) lying under the water swam out toward the buoy

2 : life buoy

buoy

verb
buoyed; buoying; buoys

Definition of buoy (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to mark by or as if by a float or buoy buoy an anchor

2a : to keep afloat a raft buoyed by empty oil drums

b : support, uplift an economy buoyed by the dramatic postwar growth of industryTime

3 : to raise the spirits of usually used with up hope buoys him up

intransitive verb

: float usually used with up They buoyed up like a cork.

Illustration of buoy

Illustration of buoy

Noun

buoy 1

In the meaning defined above

Examples of buoy in a Sentence

Verb

The tax breaks should help to buoy the economy.

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Not just for kids Forget the arm floaties and inner tubes from summer camp. Experimenting with tools like pull buoys, paddles, kickboards, fins, and snorkels can be really beneficial for your overall performance. Emily Abbate, GQ, "Watch Ryan Gosling Go Swimming in his Ralph Lauren Suit," 26 June 2018 It was picked up on buoys stretching from New Jersey up to southern New England. Elizabeth Zwirz, Fox News, "Two tornados hit NY amid powerful Northeast storms on Tuesday, NWS says," 16 May 2018 There will be a no boating, no anchoring safety zone that will be marked with buoys off the beach. Wayne K. Roustan, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Fort Lauderdale Air Show will slow traffic into Monday," 3 May 2018 To help protect them, the mining field will be ringed with buoys, monitoring any plumes of silt that are bigger than DEME had predicted. The Economist, "Undersea miningRace to the bottom," 8 Mar. 2018 Along the rocky inlets and foggy harbors of Maine, the Coast Guard maintains about 100 large buoys that use heavy brass gongs and bells to help guide mariners to port in the worst weather. David Abel, BostonGlobe.com, "Someone is stealing bells and gongs from buoys in Maine," 25 June 2018 Police investigate why children were unsupervised prior to boy's drowning The lifeguard can be seen jumping in with a rescue buoy and bringing the girl to safety. Dana Burke, Houston Chronicle, "Video: Lifeguard saves girl from drowning in Spring neighborhood pool," 28 June 2018 He was seen wading through the water as others on his boat called 911, then taking a watercraft with a clogged intake that left him stranded on a buoy in the middle of the lake, Traini said. Zaz Hollander, Anchorage Daily News, "Over pleas of victim’s family, man accused in fatal Mat-Su boat collision gets lower bail," 21 June 2018 Beneath a Cessna circling southwest of the corn buoy, the vastness of the Chesapeake glittered benignly. Earl Swift, Outside Online, "The Incredible True Story of the Henrietta C.," 20 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Strong exports, especially those to the U.S. and other developed nations, have buoyed China’s economy, which grew 6.9% last year. Lingling Wei, WSJ, "China’s Effort to Control Debt Loses Steam," 12 July 2018 The agreement could remove an element of supply uncertainty that had buoyed prices in recent years. Amrith Ramkumar, WSJ, "Copper Rebounds After Long Slump," 12 July 2018 California public employee unions, buoyed by sympathetic politicians in the governor’s office and the Legislature, feel better equipped to weather the effects of Janus than other states. Alexei Koseff, sacbee, "After 'wake-up call' from Supreme Court, California unions face tough political choices," 3 July 2018 After changing managers on the eve of the tournament, Spain has played well for spells under Fernando Hierro but has also looked vulnerable at times, and Russia will look to pounce, buoyed by the home crowd. Avi Creditor, SI.com, "LIVE: Host Russia Faces Juggernaut Spain in World Cup Round of 16," 1 July 2018 June 1988 recorded 88 percent of its possible sunshine, buoyed by eight days with 100 percent of possible sunshine. Tom Skilling, chicagotribune.com, "Ask Tom: What happened to rain-producing systems during June 1988?," 1 July 2018 Homeownership bounces back slightly, with seniors in the lead Overall homeownership rates have finally turned around, buoyed by low interest rates that help first-time buyers to keep up with their mortgage. Jeff Andrews, Curbed, "U.S. housing market continues rebound, despite increased inequality, says Harvard report," 19 June 2018 Included in Coinschedule’s ICO figures may be fundraises by startups with shoddy track records, buoyed by investors who similarly, may not have enough experience to make such investment decisions. Lucinda Shen, Fortune, "The Price of Bitcoin Cratered in 2018. But Here's Why ICOs and VC Funding to Crypto Is Breaking Records," 1 June 2018 The emotional roller-coaster of a season ended with a stinging 101-92 defeat, with the Rockets falling short of a fifth trip to the finals, a painful loss after a season of hope buoyed by high-scoring success. Lomi Kriel, Houston Chronicle, "Unhappy ending for Rockets, fans after Game 7 loss," 28 May 2018

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

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First Known Use of buoy

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1596, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for buoy

Noun

Middle English boye, probably from Middle Dutch boeye; akin to Old High German bouhhan sign — more at beacon

Verb

see buoy entry 1

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Dictionary Entries near buoy

bunyavirus

bunyip

buon fresco

buoy

buoyage

buoyance

buoyancy

Statistics for buoy

Last Updated

16 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for buoy

The first known use of buoy was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for buoy

buoy

noun

English Language Learners Definition of buoy

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an object that floats on water in a lake, bay, river, etc., to show areas that are safe or dangerous for boats

buoy

verb

English Language Learners Definition of buoy (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cause (someone) to feel happy or confident

: to lift or improve (something)

buoy

noun
\ ˈbü-ē , ˈbȯi \

Kids Definition of buoy

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a floating object anchored in a body of water to mark a channel or to warn of danger

2 : life buoy

buoy

verb
buoyed; buoying

Kids Definition of buoy (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to keep from sinking : keep afloat

2 : to brighten the mood of … if hope had not buoyed me up, I must have … given up. —Robert Louis Stevenson, Kidnapped

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Comments on buoy

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