bu·​reau | \ ˈbyu̇r-(ˌ)ō How to pronounce bureau (audio) , ˈbyər- \
plural bureaus also bureaux\ ˈbyu̇r-​(ˌ)ōz How to pronounce bureau (audio) , ˈbyər-​ \

Definition of bureau

1a British : writing desk especially : one having drawers and a slant top
b : a low chest of drawers for use in a bedroom
2a : a specialized administrative unit especially : a subdivision of an executive department of a government the Federal Bureau of Investigation
b : a branch of a newspaper, newsmagazine, or wire service in an important news center the newspaper's Washington bureau
c : a usually commercial agency that serves as an intermediary especially for exchanging information or coordinating activities credit bureau the local visitor's bureau

Examples of bureau in a Sentence

the Federal Bureau of Investigation The book is on top of my bureau.
Recent Examples on the Web The list of noncitizens was a priority for two political appointees whom Trump had placed in the bureau’s senior management, Nathaniel T. Cogley and Benjamin Overholt. Michael Wines, BostonGlobe.com, 15 Jan. 2022 CBS News has reached out to the meteorology bureau for more information and is awaiting response. Caitlin O'kane, CBS News, 13 Jan. 2022 Educational Fund said in a statement Wednesday that Santos must rebuild trust in the bureau after a 2020 census challenged by the pandemic, natural disasters, delays and attempts at political interference by the Trump administration. Cayla Harris, San Antonio Express-News, 5 Jan. 2022 Educational Fund said in a statement that Santos must now rebuild trust in the bureau following a 2020 census challenged by by the pandemic, natural disasters, delays and attempts at political interference by the Trump administration. Chron, 5 Jan. 2022 For example, in its 2020 Internet Crime Report released in March, the FBI confirmed the total cost of attacks reported to the bureau in 2020 amounted to $29.1 million, an increase of more than 200% from the year before. Andrew Hollister, Forbes, 5 Jan. 2022 Entertainment, as defined by the bureau’s survey, includes audio and visual equipment and services; pets; fees and admissions; toys, hobbies, and playground equipment; and other entertainment spending. San Diego Union-Tribune, 22 Dec. 2021 After his promotion to captain, he was also assigned to the patrol bureau in addition to his district commander duties. Elliot Hughes, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 17 Dec. 2021 The data comes after FBI statistics showed murders spiked nearly 30% nationally last year compared to 2019 data, marking the largest single-year jump in the bureau’s 60 years of recording such figures. Fox News, 17 Dec. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bureau.' 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 bureau

1698, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for bureau

French, desk, cloth covering for desks, from Old French burel woolen cloth, from Old French *bure, from Late Latin burra shaggy cloth

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Last Updated

19 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Bureau.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bureau. Accessed 23 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for bureau



English Language Learners Definition of bureau

: a government department or part of a government department in the U.S.
: an office of a newspaper, magazine, etc., that is not the main office but is in an important city
: an office or organization that provides services or information to the public


bu·​reau | \ ˈbyu̇r-ō How to pronounce bureau (audio) \

Kids Definition of bureau

1 : a low chest of drawers for use in a bedroom
2 : a division of a government department the Federal Bureau of Investigation
3 : a business office that provides services a travel bureau

More from Merriam-Webster on bureau

Nglish: Translation of bureau for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bureau for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about bureau


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