Definition of burgeon
- when the flame trees and jacaranda are burgeoning
- —Alan Carmichael
- The market for her work has burgeoned in recent years.
- tiny events which burgeon into national alarums
- —Herman Wouk
Theme music by Joshua Stamper ©2006 New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP
The market for collectibles has burgeoned in recent years.
the trout population in the stream is burgeoning now that the water is clean
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'burgeon.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Burgeon comes from the Middle English word burjonen, which is from Anglo-French burjuner; both mean "to bud or sprout." "Burgeon" is often used figuratively, as when P.G. Wodehouse used it in Joy in the Morning: "I weighed this. It sounded promising. Hope began to burgeon." Usage commentators have objected to the use of "burgeon" to mean "to flourish" or "to grow rapidly," insisting that any figurative use should stay true to the word's earliest literal meaning and distinguish budding or sprouting from subsequent growing. But the sense of "burgeon" that indicates growing or expanding and prospering (as in "the burgeoning music scene" or "the burgeoning international market") has been in established use for decades, and is, in fact, the most common use of "burgeon" today.
First Known Use: 14th centurySee Words from the same year
What made you want to look up burgeon? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).
to lessen the seriousness or strength of
Get Word of the Day daily email!