bur·​geon | \ ˈbər-jən How to pronounce burgeon (audio) \
variants: or less commonly
burgeoned also bourgeoned; burgeoning also bourgeoning; burgeons also bourgeons

Definition of burgeon

intransitive verb

1a : to send forth new growth (such as buds or branches) : sprout
b : bloom when the flame trees and jacaranda are burgeoning— Alan Carmichael
2 : to grow and expand rapidly : flourish The market for her work has burgeoned in recent years. tiny events which burgeon into national alarums— Herman Wouk

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Did You Know?

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.

Examples of burgeon in a Sentence

The market for collectibles has burgeoned in recent years. the trout population in the stream is burgeoning now that the water is clean

Recent Examples on the Web

The new building comes at a time when UHV-Katy is seeing burgeoning enrollment increases. Roy Kent, Houston Chronicle, "UHV Katy, UH prepares move to new location in the fall," 5 July 2019 Hopper and Joyce are obviously back too, along with Steve's excellent hair and his burgeoning friendship with Dustin. Jessica Radloff, Glamour, "Everything We Know So Far About Stranger Things Season 3," 3 July 2019 The immigration courts have been overwhelmed for years with a burgeoning load that is now approaching 1 million cases. Tal Kopan, SFChronicle.com, "Trump administration ending in-person interpreters at immigrants’ first hearings," 3 July 2019 In Iron Man 3, Aldrich Killian becomes a supervillain after Tony declines to join his burgeoning tech company, humiliating him. Eliana Dockterman, Time, "How Iron Man's Legacy — and BARF Technology — Plays a Major Role in Spider-Man: Far From Home," 2 July 2019 By the mid 1980s, Williamson was preaching in Los Angeles, and attracting an audience among Hollywood’s gay community, which was attempting to cope with the burgeoning AIDS crisis. Jim Geraghty, National Review, "Twenty Things You Probably Didn’t Know about Marianne Williamson," 1 July 2019 But now, the star proudly displays her face across all of her new singles and the artwork for Clarity, owning her image and her identity as a burgeoning queen of pop. Stephen Daw, Billboard, "Kim Petras on Why Her 'Clarity' Era Is Still Just Her 'Building Phase' Towards Superstardom," 28 June 2019 No, the 21-year-old is not a Champions League winner yet, but his command of the armband at U21 level internationally is a sign of his burgeoning talents in that field. SI.com, "6 Positions Chelsea Must Strengthen (From Within) to Compete Next Season," 26 June 2019 This is a serious and deeply informed plan to phase out the burgeoning US fossil fuel industry, alongside a plan to protect the workers and communities who depend on it. David Roberts, Vox, "Jay Inslee has a plan to phase out fossil fuel production in the US," 24 June 2019

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.

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First Known Use of burgeon

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for burgeon

Middle English burjonen, from Anglo-French burjuner, from burjun bud, from Vulgar Latin *burrion-, burrio, from Late Latin burra fluff, shaggy cloth

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Statistics for burgeon

Last Updated

9 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for burgeon

The first known use of burgeon was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for burgeon



English Language Learners Definition of burgeon

formal : to grow or develop quickly

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More from Merriam-Webster on burgeon

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with burgeon

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for burgeon

Spanish Central: Translation of burgeon

Nglish: Translation of burgeon for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of burgeon for Arabic Speakers

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