fur·​row | \ ˈfər-(ˌ)ō How to pronounce furrow (audio) , ˈfə-(ˌ)rō\

Definition of furrow

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a trench in the earth made by a plow
b : plowed land : field
2 : something that resembles the track of a plow: such as
a : a marked narrow depression : groove tracing a fingernail along a furrow in the corduroy of her housecoat— Douglass Wallop
b : a deep wrinkle furrows in his brow


furrowed; furrowing; furrows

Definition of furrow (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to make furrows, grooves, wrinkles, or lines in

intransitive verb

: to make or form furrows, grooves, wrinkles, or lines

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Synonyms for furrow

Synonyms: Noun

crease, crimp, crinkle, wrinkle

Synonyms: Verb

break, plow

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Examples of furrow in a Sentence


We plowed furrows in the field. When he frowns a deep furrow forms in his brow.


His forehead furrows when he frowns. we had to furrow the field before we could plant the wheat
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The Outback is also surprisingly comfortable, absorbing all but the worst furrows, rocks and tree branches with aplomb. Larry Printz, Dallas News, "The 2020 Subaru Outback is a family hauling staple, even after six generations," 10 Aug. 2019 The viewer’s eye is drawn down neat furrows and along irrigation systems; gardeners can be seen assiduously tending to crops. J.w.s.w. | Berlin, The Economist, "The variegated symbolism of gardens in art," 1 Aug. 2019 Using organic cotton and wool from the South of France, Testard wove his own fabrics to represent plowing fields, and created jacquards whose patterns represent furrows in the land. Diana Budds, Curbed, "How design is being upended by the climate crisis," 9 July 2019 Place the sets in a shallow furrow, space four to six inches apart, and cover with just enough soil to leave their pointed tips at the soil surface. Hilary Dahl, Good Housekeeping, "How to Plant a Fall Garden and Grow Late-Season Crops," 1 July 2019 Ed is retired, long-divorced and living in an unidentified furrow of Middle America. Mark Jenkins, chicagotribune.com, "‘The Tomorrow Man’ review: John Lithgow plays a prepper readying for world’s end, yet hoping for romance," 4 June 2019 And yet, Chinese scientists have documented jumping spiders that provide their young with droplets of a nutrient-rich fluid from a furrow on the mother’s body. Diana Gitig, Ars Technica, "Soy milk, almond milk, oat milk. Spider milk?," 30 Nov. 2018 Between its first postcrisis rate rise at the end of 2015, and its fifth in December 2017, the Fed ploughed a largely lonely furrow. Paul Hannon, WSJ, "Following the Fed, Central Banks Are Ready to Raise Rates," 19 July 2018 His brow is bisected by a deep furrow, and his former prettiness has weathered into something much more interesting. Paul Schrader, New York Times, "Review: ‘First Reformed’ Is an Epiphany. Ethan Hawke Is, Too.," 17 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

What was there was not there, disappearing in the fold, furrowing the field. L. S. Asekoff, Harper's magazine, "Sundowner," 19 Aug. 2019 Although the character is the most complex and thoughtful, Haddish seems constrained throughout the movie, tamping down her natural exuberance to furrow her brow and scowl menacingly at the men who inevitably want to encroach on her newfound turf. Ann Hornaday, Twin Cities, "Mob wives turn mobsters in ‘The Kitchen,’ a pale shadow of last year’s ‘Widows’," 8 Aug. 2019 On Zoom conference calls across the US this week, brows furrowed as the news broke that the video conference company had a flaw in its backend that could give hackers access to people’s webcams. Emily Dreyfuss, WIRED, "Security News this Week: Palantir Manual Shows How Law Enforcement Tracks Families," 13 July 2019 The drawing depicted a story of unease, especially by the way some of the profiles grimaced and furrowed their brows. Abdi Latif Dahir, Quartz Africa, "Sudan’s street protests have inspired another revolution—in art," 12 July 2019 Her brow doesn’t furrow — a reflection of her control rather than a symptom of Botox dependence. Robin Givhan, Washington Post, "The irresistible authenticity of Gayle King," 11 June 2019 Between this military interrogation and a few chats with power-plant employees in the mission, Remedy has a lot of exposition in store for fans—including strange, Twin Peaks-ian tales from an odd janitor whom Jesse openly furrows her brow at. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Control pre-E3 hands-on: The modern-day X-Men video game we’ve always wanted," 3 June 2019 Your brow furrows and that vein above your eyebrow comes to life. Charlie Theel, Ars Technica, "The Mind: Most polarizing card game of the year?," 4 Aug. 2018 Their brows are not furrowed by the stress and expense of car ownership and dependence. Eben Weiss, Outside Online, "No, Cycling Isn't Elitist," 5 July 2018

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for furrow

Noun and Verb

Middle English furgh, forow, from Old English furh; akin to Old High German furuh furrow, Latin porca

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Statistics for furrow

Last Updated

26 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for furrow

The first known use of furrow was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for furrow



English Language Learners Definition of furrow

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a long and narrow cut in the ground
: a narrow line or wrinkle in the skin of a person's face



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

: to make furrows in (something)


fur·​row | \ ˈfər-ō How to pronounce furrow (audio) \

Kids Definition of furrow

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a trench made by or as if by a plow
2 : a narrow groove : wrinkle


furrowed; furrowing

Kids Definition of furrow (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make wrinkles or grooves in He furrowed his brow.


fur·​row | \ ˈfər-(ˌ)ō, -ə(-w); ˈfə-(ˌ)rō, -rə(-w) How to pronounce furrow (audio) \

Medical Definition of furrow

1 : a marked narrow depression or groove
2 : a deep wrinkle

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More from Merriam-Webster on furrow

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with furrow

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for furrow

Spanish Central: Translation of furrow

Nglish: Translation of furrow for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of furrow for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about furrow

Comments on furrow

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


to make a temporary encampment

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