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[bur-lap] /ˈbɜr læp/
a plain-woven, coarse fabric of jute, hemp, or the like; gunny.
a lightweight fabric made in imitation of this.
verb (used with object), burlapped, burlapping.
to wrap with burlap:
to burlap and tie a newly dug tree.
Origin of burlap
1685-95; earlier borelap, equivalent to bore(l) coarse cloth (see bureau) + lap1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for burlap
Historical Examples
  • We had no beds—sleeping on long, burlap bags stuffed with hay.

    A Labrador Doctor

    Wilfred Thomason Grenfell
  • Barney arrived with the chilled quarter of beef wrapped in burlap.

    Make Mine Homogenized Rick Raphael
  • Jute is purchased from India and manufactured into burlap and rugs.

    Commercial Geography

    Jacques W. Redway
  • His bag of peanuts is here, made of burlap and three feet high.

    Dear Enemy Jean Webster
  • Be careful not to apply too much glue on the burlap, or it will soak through.

    Mission Furniture H. H. Windsor
  • The oak slats are cut and fit over the burlap as shown in Fig. 2.

    Mission Furniture H. H. Windsor
  • They should be removed from the box when being stained so as not to spot or stain the burlap.

    Mission Furniture H. H. Windsor
  • Bind this down tightly with a piece of burlap and tack the edges to the rails.

    Mission Furniture H. H. Windsor
  • Cut out the corners of the burlap so that it will fit about the posts.

    Mission Furniture H. H. Windsor
  • For the paneling, frames will be needed about which to fasten the burlap.

    Mission Furniture H. H. Windsor
British Dictionary definitions for burlap


a coarse fabric woven from jute, hemp, or the like
Word Origin
C17: from borel coarse cloth, from Old French burel (see bureau) + lap1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for burlap

1690s, probably from Middle English borel "coarse cloth," from Old French burel (see bureau); or Dutch boeren "coarse," perhaps confused with boer "peasant." The second element, -lap, meant "piece of cloth" (see lap (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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