From Middle English bulge (“leather bag; hump”), from Old Northern French boulge (“leather bag”), from Late Latin bulga (“leather sack”), from Gaulish *bulga, *bulgos, from Proto-Celtic *bolgos (“sack, bag, stomach”). Cognate with bilge, belly, bellows, budget, French bouge, German Balg, etc.. See also budge, budget.
bulge (plural bulges)
- Something sticking out from a surface; a swelling, protuberant part; a bending outward, especially when caused by pressure.
- a bulge in a wall
- a bulge in my pocket where I kept my wallet
- February 2018, Robert Draper in National Geographic Magazine, They Are Watching You—and Everything Else on the Planet
- Haz sits in the trailer for 10 hours straight, eyes trained on the patrons. If he sees the makings of a drug deal or a fight, he notifies the club’s in-house security by walkie-talkie. It amazes him how indiscreet drug dealers can be—with the bulges in their socks and their melodramatic handovers—despite the presence of security guards.
- The bilge or protuberant part of a cask.
- (nautical) The bilge of a vessel.
- (colloquial) The outline of male genitals visible through clothing.
- (intransitive) To stick out from (a surface).
- The submarine bulged because of the enormous air pressure inside.
- He stood six feet tall, with muscular arms bulging out of his black T-shirt.
- (intransitive) To bilge, as a ship; to founder.
- And scattered navies bulge on distant shores.