EnglishEdit

 
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EtymologyEdit

From Middle English swarm, from Old English swearm (swarm, multitude), from Proto-Germanic *swarmaz (swarm, dizziness), from Proto-Indo-European *swer- (to buzz, hum). Cognate with Saterland Frisian Swoorm (swarm), Dutch zwerm, German Schwarm, Danish sværm, Swedish svärm, Icelandic svarmur (tumult, swarm), Latin susurrus (whispering, humming), Lithuanian surma (a pipe), Russian свире́ль (svirélʹ, a pipe, reed).

The verb is from Middle English swarmen, swermen, from Old English swierman (to swarm), from Proto-Germanic *swarmijaną (to swarm), from the noun. Cognate with Scots swairm, swerm (to swarm), Dutch zwermen, German schwärmen, Danish sværme, Swedish svärma.

PronunciationEdit

NounEdit

 
swarm of locusts.

swarm (plural swarms)

  1. A large number of insects, especially when in motion or (for bees) migrating to a new colony.
  2. A mass of people, animals or things in motion or turmoil.
    a swarm of meteorites
    • 1705 (revised 1718), Joseph Addison, Remarks on Several Parts of Italy
      those prodigious swarms that had settled themselves in every part of it [Italy]
  3. (computing) A group of nodes sharing the same torrent in a BitTorrent network.

Derived termsEdit

TranslationsEdit

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.

VerbEdit

swarm (third-person singular simple present swarms, present participle swarming, simple past and past participle swarmed)

  1. (intransitive) To move as a swarm.
    • 1915, G[eorge] A. Birmingham [pseudonym; James Owen Hannay], chapter I, in Gossamer, New York, N.Y.: George H. Doran Company, OCLC 5661828:
      There is an hour or two, after the passengers have embarked, which is disquieting and fussy. Mail bags, so I understand, are being put on board. Stewards, carrying cabin trunks, swarm in the corridors.
  2. (intransitive) To teem, or be overrun with insects, people, etc.
  3. (transitive) To fill a place as a swarm.
  4. (transitive) To overwhelm as by an opposing army.
  5. To climb by gripping with arms and legs alternately.
    • 1784, William Coxe, Travels into Poland, Russia, Sweden and Denmark
      At the top was placed a piece of money, as a prize for those who could swarm up and seize it.
    • 1919, W. Somerset Maugham, The Moon and Sixpence, chapter 55
      She called out, and a boy came running along. He swarmed up a tree, and presently threw down a ripe nut. Ata pierced a hole in it, and the doctor took a long, refreshing draught.
  6. To breed multitudes.

TranslationsEdit

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.

See alsoEdit

AnagramsEdit


Middle EnglishEdit

Alternative formsEdit

EtymologyEdit

From Old English swearm, from Proto-Germanic *swarmaz.

PronunciationEdit

NounEdit

swarm (plural swarmes)

  1. A swarm (large, moving group of bees)
  2. (rare) A large group of people.

Derived termsEdit

DescendantsEdit

  • English: swarm
  • Scots: swairm

ReferencesEdit