hur·​ly-bur·​ly ˌhər-lē-ˈbər-lē How to pronounce hurly-burly (audio)
hurly-burly adjective

Examples of hurly-burly in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The image’s low contrast and lack of sharpness suggest that it was snapped from the hurly-burly of the piazza. Paul Elie, The New Yorker, 14 Nov. 2023 By then, his approach to artists had softened, perhaps from age, or from the experience of being in the creative hurly-burly himself. Helen Shaw, The New Yorker, 1 Nov. 2023 He is considered a must-follow in the hurly-burly community known as Crypto Twitter for his informed takes on legal and regulatory news. Jeff John Roberts, Fortune Crypto, 3 Oct. 2023 For generations, ever since it was first published in 1936, Consumer Reports has been a go-to source for shoppers seeking an impartial guide to the hurly-burly of the marketplace. Emily Langer, Washington Post, 10 Aug. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'hurly-burly.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


probably alteration & reduplication of hurling, gerund of hurl

First Known Use

1539, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of hurly-burly was in 1539

Dictionary Entries Near hurly-burly

Cite this Entry

“Hurly-burly.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


plural hurly-burlies
: tumult
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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