1 of 3


plural buses also busses
often attributive
: a large motor vehicle designed to carry passengers usually along a fixed route according to a schedule
took the bus to work
double-decker buses
waiting at the bus stop
: a small hand truck
electrical engineering : bus bar
computers : a set of parallel conductors (see conductor sense d(1)) in a computer system that forms a main transmission path
: a spacecraft or missile that carries one or more detachable devices (such as warheads)


2 of 3


bused also bussed; busing also bussing

intransitive verb

: to travel by a large motor vehicle designed to carry passengers usually along a fixed route according to a schedule : to travel by bus
: to work as a busboy

transitive verb

: to transport by bus
busing kids to school
Students were bused in for the game.
: clear sense 4d
bus dishes
: to remove dirty dishes from
bus tables


3 of 3


throw (someone) under the bus
: to criticize, blame, or punish (someone in a vulnerable position) especially in order to avoid blame or gain an advantage
… we will not throw any student under the bus for instant restoration of our image or our reputation.Donna Shalala
But he went out of his way to make clear that this one wasn't really on him. The problem lay with underlings, whom he quickly threw under the bus.Rem Rieder

Did you know?

The History of Bus

In 1661, mathematician Blaise Pascal conceived the world’s first bus service, proposing that a number of coaches should “circulate along predetermined routes in Paris at regular intervals regardless of the number of people,” and pick up passengers for a small fixed fare. The word bus is short for omnibus, which means “for everyone.” Bus was first used in this sense in the 1830s, its "everyone" meaning referencing the fact that anyone could join the coach along its route, unlike with stagecoaches, which had to be pre-booked.

Example Sentences

Noun She boarded a bus in Nashville. Are you traveling by train or by bus? Verb He buses tables at the local diner.
Recent Examples on the Web
About 500,000 workers joined in the day of mass action, as teachers, train and bus drivers, university lecturers, civil servants and airport staff staged walkouts. Karla Adam, Washington Post, 1 Feb. 2023 Around 500,000 workers joined in the day of mass action, as teachers, train and bus drivers, university lecturers, civil servants and airport staff staged walkouts. Karla Adam, Anchorage Daily News, 1 Feb. 2023 In an effort to encourage city employees to bike and bus more, Boston is picking up a large chunk of its workers’ public transit tabs. Taylor Dolven, BostonGlobe.com, 1 Feb. 2023 In recent years, the market has operated from a downtown exhibition center, that has necessitated a taxi, bus or subway journey for participants attending both elements. Patrick Frater, Variety, 31 Jan. 2023 Train, subway and bus services were severely curtailed, and dozens of flights were canceled. Noemie Bisserbe, WSJ, 31 Jan. 2023 Meanwhile, Rast Reisen, the bus and travel company near Freiburg im Breisgau in southwestern Germany, has seen diesel fuel rise from 12% to 15% of costs to 20% to 25%. David Mchugh, The Christian Science Monitor, 30 Jan. 2023 Some Maryland Transit Administration bus and light rail routes will be impacted, and a route on the Charm City Circulator will be detoured in preparation. Dan Belson, Baltimore Sun, 29 Jan. 2023 Six people died and three others were injured in a crash involving an express bus and a freight truck in upstate New York Saturday morning, according to authorities. Zenebou Sylla, CNN, 29 Jan. 2023
Texas will bus migrants Menendez and the rest of the families that sat under the tree were among the dozens of refugees transported from a shelter in Humboldt Park to a hotel in Burr Ridge on Wednesday. Dallas News, 10 Sep. 2022 Many asked what urgent matter prompted authorities to bus people from their homes at that hour. Cao Li, WSJ, 19 Sep. 2022 Busing was stopped for white neighborhoods in the East and South ends of Louisville in 1985 but the West end of Louisville has continued to bus black students for 35 years. Olivia Krauth, The Courier-Journal, 26 Oct. 2022 And Pennsylvanians chose Democrat Josh Shapiro to lead the state over Doug Mastriano, a Republican state senator who helped bus people to the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, for the rally in support of Trump's false claims. Stacey Barchenger, The Arizona Republic, 13 Nov. 2022 Mastriano is a Trump loyalist who led calls for a 2020 audit and helped bus people to the Jan. 6, 2021 rally that turned into a riot at the U.S. Capitol. David Jackson, USA TODAY, 6 Nov. 2022 Even his children helped bus tables and seat diners. Deanna Pan, BostonGlobe.com, 18 Oct. 2022 The poll shows many voters in the state, Hispanics in particular, are concerned with conditions at the border and support the state's effort to bus migrants to other U.S. cities. Kyle Morris, Fox News, 28 Sep. 2022 One logistical advantage is better travel for Stonehill teams, which sometimes had to bus as far as West Virginia or western Pennsylvania for out-of-conference Division 2 games. Michael Silverman, BostonGlobe.com, 27 Sep. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bus.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Noun and Verb

short for omnibus

First Known Use


1835, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


circa 1909, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of bus was in 1835

Dictionary Entries Near bus

Cite this Entry

“Bus.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bus. Accessed 8 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 noun
plural buses also busses
: a large motor vehicle for carrying passengers
: a conductor or group of conductors for collecting electric currents and sending them to outgoing wires


2 of 2 verb
bused also bussed; busing also bussing
: to travel or transport by bus

More from Merriam-Webster on bus

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