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See also: Buzz
From Middle English *bussen, of onomatopoeic origin. Compare Middle English bunning (“buzzing”), Middle English hossing (“buzzing”), Middle English bissen (“to hush”).
buzz (countable and uncountable, plural buzzes)
- A continuous humming noise, as of bees; a confused murmur, as of general conversation in low tones.
- 1899 February, Joseph Conrad, “The Heart of Darkness”, in Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine, volume CLXV, number M, New York, N.Y.: The Leonard Scott Publishing Company, […], →OCLC, part I, page 209:
- In the steady buzz of flies the homeward-bound agent was lying flushed and insensible[.]
- A whisper.
- The audible friction of voiced consonants.
- (informal) A rush or feeling of energy or excitement; a feeling of slight intoxication.
- Still feeling the buzz from the coffee, he pushed through the last of the homework.
- (informal) A telephone call or e-mail.
- (informal) Major topic of conversation; widespread rumor; information spread behind the scenes.
- 1995, Amy Heckerling, Clueless, spoken by Cher (Alicia Silverstone):
- Mr. Hall? The buzz on Christian is that his parents have joint custody, so he'll be spending one semester in Chicago and one semester here.
- 2006 Sept. 6, Daren Fonda, "Ford Motor's New Chief: "I Think It's a Tough Situation"," Time:
- In Detroit, the buzz is that he's too nice a guy, unwilling to impose draconian job cuts at the risk of angering the UAW.
- 2011 Allen Gregory, "Pilot" (season 1, episode 1):
- Allen Gregory DeLongpre: Who's he?
- Patrick: He's only the most popular kid in school.
- Allen Gregory: Ah, the two heavyweights finally meet. Sure you're tired of all the buzz. Allen Gregory DeLongpre.
- Joel Zadak: Joel...Zadak!
- (uncountable) Synonym of fizz-buzz (“counting game”)
continuous humming noise
whisper — see whisper
audible friction of voice consonants
rush of feeling of energy or excitement
informal: telephone call
information spread behind the scenes
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.
buzz (third-person singular simple present buzzes, present participle buzzing, simple past and past participle buzzed)
- (intransitive) To make a low, continuous, humming or sibilant sound, like that made by bees with their wings.
- 1855 November 10, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, “Hiawatha’s Childhood”, in The Song of Hiawatha, Boston, Mass.: Ticknor and Fields, →OCLC, page 47:
- Ah! the singing, fatal arrow, / Like a wasp it buzzed, and stung him [a roebuck]!
- 1922, D[avid] H[erbert] Lawrence, “The Holy Family”, in Fantasia of the Unconscious, New York, N.Y.: Thomas Seltzer, →OCLC, page 14:
- So that now the universe has escaped from the pin which was pushed through it, like an impaled fly vainly buzzing: now that the multiple universe flies its own complicated course quite free, and hasn't got any hub, we can hope also to escape.
- (by extension) To utter a murmuring sound; to speak with a low, humming voice.
- c. 1588–1593 (date written), William Shakespeare, “The Lamentable Tragedy of Titus Andronicus”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies […] (First Folio), London: […] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act IV, scene iv]:
- However these disturbers of our peace / Buzz in the people's ears.
- Of a group of people, to talk about some interesting topic excitedly.
- 1928 February 25 – March 3, Arthur Conan Doyle, “When the World Screamed”, in The Professor Challenger Stories […], London: John Murray, […], published , →OCLC, page 570:
- But I tell you this has set all London buzzing. The old man is where he likes to be, with a pin-point limelight right on his hairy old head.
- (chiefly of an insect) To fly while making such a sound.
- A fly was buzzing past me.
- 1897, Bram Stoker, chapter XX, in Dracula, New York, N.Y.: Modern Library, →OCLC:
- The flies, lethargic with the autumn, were beginning to buzz into the room.
- (colloquial) To show a high level of activity and haste, energization or excitement, to be busy as a bee in one’s actions but perhaps mentally charged.
- (transitive) To whisper; to communicate, as tales, in an undertone; to spread, as a report, by whispers or secretly.
- c. 1591–1592 (date written), William Shakespeare, “The Third Part of Henry the Sixt, […]”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies […] (First Folio), London: […] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act V, scene vi]:
- I will buzz abroad such prophecies / That Edward shall be fearful of his life.
- (transitive) To talk to incessantly or confidentially in a low humming voice.
- (aviation) To fly at high speed and at a very low altitude over a specified area, as to make a surprise pass.
- 2013, The Economist, Stopping asteroid strikes: Defenders of the Earth:
- […] an asteroid a mere 15-20 metres across exploded with the force of a medium-sized atom bomb over Chelyabinsk, in Russia, and another, much larger one buzzed Earth a few hours later.
- (transitive) To cut the hair in a close-cropped military style, or buzzcut.
- 2012, Ellen Hartman, Out of Bounds, page 130:
- Deacon said, “You used to beg me to let you buzz your hair when you were little.” “And then I grew up and realized how awful you looked when you buzzed yours.”
- (archaic, transitive) To drink to the bottom.
- 1849, The New Monthly Magazine and Universal Register:
- He buzzed the bottle with such a hearty good will as settled the fate of another, which Soapey rang for as a matter of course. There was but the rejected one, which however Spigot put into a different decanter and brought in […]
- (transitive) To communicate with (a person) by means of a buzzer.
- 2012, Steven Joseph Sinopoli, The Seventh House, page 66:
- Then one day my secretary buzzed me and said Frank Sinatra was on the phone. When I picked up the phone it was the Chief who played dumb and would not admit that he said he was Frank Sinatra.
- For quotations using this term, see Citations:buzz.
to make a low, continuous, humming or sibilant sound
to show a high level of activity and haste
to communicate, as tales, in an undertone
to talk to incessantly or confidentially in a low humming voice
aviation: to fly at high speed and at a low altitude
to cut the hair in a close-cropped style
to drink to the bottom
to communicate by means of a buzzer
buzz m (uncountable)
- buzz (excitement)
- English terms inherited from Middle English
- English terms derived from Middle English
- English 1-syllable words
- English terms with IPA pronunciation
- English terms with audio links
- Rhymes:English/ʌz/1 syllable
- English lemmas
- English nouns
- English uncountable nouns
- English countable nouns
- English terms with quotations
- English informal terms
- English verbs
- English intransitive verbs
- English colloquialisms
- English transitive verbs
- English terms with archaic senses
- English onomatopoeias
- en:Animal sounds
- French terms borrowed from English
- French terms derived from English
- French 1-syllable words
- French terms with IPA pronunciation
- French terms with audio links
- French lemmas
- French nouns
- French uncountable nouns
- French masculine nouns