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Etymology 1Edit

From Middle English burre, perhaps from Old English byrst (bristle).


burr (plural burrs)

  1. A sharp, pointy object, such as a sliver or splinter.
  2. A bur; a seed pod with sharp features that stick in fur or clothing.
  3. A small piece of material left on an edge after a cutting operation.
    • Tomlinson
      The graver, in ploughing furrows in the surface of the copper, raises corresponding ridges or burrs.
  4. A thin flat piece of metal, formed from a sheet by punching; a small washer put on the end of a rivet before it is swaged down.
  5. A broad iron ring on a tilting lance just below the grip, to prevent the hand from slipping.
  6. The ear lobe.
  7. The knot at the bottom of an antler.
Derived termsEdit
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.

Etymology 2Edit

Onomatopoeia, influenced by bur.


burr (plural burrs)

  1. A rough humming sound.
  2. A uvular "r".


burr (third-person singular simple present burrs, present participle burring, simple past and past participle burred)

  1. (transitive) To pronounce with a uvular "r".
  2. (intransitive) To make a rough humming sound.
    • 1950, C. S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Collins, 1998, Chapter 7,
      The first thing Lucy noticed as she went in was a burring sound, and the first thing she saw was a kind-looking old she-beaver sitting in the corner with a thread in her mouth working busily at her sewing machine, and it was from it that the sound came.

Etymology 3Edit

Origin uncertain.


burr (plural burrs)

  1. (obsolete) A metal ring at the top of the hand-rest on a spear.
    • 1485, Sir Thomas Malory, chapter iv, in Le Morte Darthur, book XXI:
      And there kyng Arthur smote syr mordred vnder the shelde wyth a foyne of his spere thorughoute the body more than a fadom / And whan syr Mordred felte that he had hys dethes wounde / He thryst hym self wyth the myght that he had vp to the bur of kynge Arthurs spere / And right so he smote his fader Arthur wyth his swerde holden in bothe his handes

Etymology 4Edit

From burl.


burr (plural burrs)

  1. (Britain) Alternative spelling of burl