[verb oh-ver-ruhn; noun oh-ver-ruhn]
- to rove over (a country, region, etc.); invade; ravage: a time when looting hordes had overrun the province.
- to swarm over in great numbers, as animals, especially vermin; infest: The house had been overrun by rats.
- to spread or grow rapidly over, as plants, especially vines, weeds, etc.: a garden overrun with weeds.
- to attack and defeat decisively, occupying and controlling the enemy's position; overwhelm.
- to spread rapidly throughout, as a new idea or spirit: a rekindling of scholarship that had overrun Europe.
- to run or go beyond, as a certain limit: The new jet overran the landing field.
- to exceed, as a budget or estimate: to overrun one's allotted time.
- to run over; overflow: During the flood season, the river overruns its banks for several miles.
- to print additional copies of (a book, pamphlet, etc.) in excess of the original or the usual order.
- to carry over (type or words) to another page.
- to sail past (an intended stopping or turning point) by accident.
- (of a ship) to complete (a schedule of calls) more rapidly than anticipated.
- to outrun; overtake in running.
- to run over; overflow: a stream that always overruns at springtime.
- to exceed the proper, desired, or normal quantity, limit, order, etc.: Do you want to overrun on this next issue?
- an act or instance of overrunning.
- an amount in excess; surplus: an overrun of 10,000 copies of a new book.
- the exceeding of estimated costs in design, development, and production, especially as estimated in a contract: a staggering overrun on the new fighter plane.
- the amount exceeded: an overrun of $500,000 for each fighter plane.
- a run on an item of manufacture beyond the quantity ordered by a customer and often offered at a discount.
- the amount by which the volume of a food, as butter or ice cream, is increased above the original volume by the inclusion of air, water, or another substance: With only a 20 percent overrun, this is an excellent ice cream.
Origin of overrun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for overrun
He was one of six children who had been in the Ebola isolation center that had been overrun.The Photojournalist Who Stared Down Ebola
November 8, 2014
Had they overrun the Iraqi unit,” Dempsey said, “it was a straight shot to the airport.Iraqis Swear: Baghdad Airport is Safe From ISIS
October 13, 2014
Hospitals, overrun with Ebola patients and low on supplies, are not available for his 8-month pregnant wife.Courageous Filmmakers Are Fighting Ebola On Screen
August 20, 2014
A day after launching, the site was overrun with trolls and taken down by admins.ReaganBook Is the Latest Conservative #Fail
July 31, 2014
The soon-vacated site was then overrun by Taliban forces, who had to be driven out roughly a month later by the Afghan army.Exclusive: CIA Falls Back in Afghanistan
May 5, 2014
Whatever the cause of the war, it's the bitterness of death for these people to be overrun.The Rock of Chickamauga
Joseph A. Altsheler
They overrun the seven continents and their respective seas.Rosinante to the Road Again
John Dos Passos
The benefit overran the merit the first day, and has overrun the merit ever since.Essays, Second Series
Ralph Waldo Emerson
The surrounding walls are overrun with vines and bordered by pear trees.England, Picturesque and Descriptive
This court is overrun with Jesuits, and we must needs adopt their vernacular.Secret Memoirs: The Story of Louise, Crown Princess
Henry W. Fischer
- (tr) to attack or invade and defeat conclusively
- (tr) to swarm or spread over rapidly
- to run over (something); overflow
- to extend or run beyond a limit
- (intr) (of an engine) to run with a closed throttle at a speed dictated by that of the vehicle it drives, as on a decline
- to print (a book, journal, etc) in a greater quantity than ordered
- to print additional copies of (a publication)
- (tr) printing to transfer (set type and other matter) from one column, line, or page, to another
- (tr) archaic to run faster than
- the act or an instance of overrunning
- the amount or extent of overrunning
- the number of copies of a publication in excess of the quantity ordered
- the cleared level area at the end of an airport runway
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
Word Origin and History for overrun
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper