billow

[ bil-oh ]
/ ˈbɪl oʊ /

noun

a great wave or surge of the sea.
any surging mass: billows of smoke.

verb (used without object)

to rise or roll in or like billows; surge.
to swell out, puff up, etc., as by the action of wind: flags billowing in the breeze.

verb (used with object)

to make rise, surge, swell, or the like: A sudden wind billowed the tent alarmingly.

Origin of billow

1545–55; < Old Norse bylgja wave, cognate with Middle Low German bulge; akin to Old English gebylgan to anger, provoke

OTHER WORDS FROM billow

un·der·bil·low, verb (used without object)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for billow

British Dictionary definitions for billow

billow
/ (ˈbɪləʊ) /

noun

a large sea wave
a swelling or surging mass, as of smoke or sound
a large atmospheric wave, usually in the lee of a hill
(plural) poetic the sea itself

verb

to rise up, swell out, or cause to rise up or swell out

Derived forms of billow

billowing, adjective, noun

Word Origin for billow

C16: from Old Norse bylgja; related to Swedish bōlja, Danish bölg, Middle High German bulge; see bellow, belly
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