from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A protruding part; an outward curve or swelling.
  • n. Nautical A bilge.
  • n. A sudden, usually temporary increase in number or quantity: The baby boom created a bulge in school enrollment.
  • n. An advantage.
  • transitive v. To cause to curve outward.
  • intransitive v. To curve outward.
  • intransitive v. To swell up.
  • intransitive v. To stick out; protrude.
  • intransitive v. To be filled or overfilled: pockets bulging with coins.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Something sticking out from a surface.
  • v. To stick out from (a surface).
  • v. To bilge, as a ship; to founder.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The bilge or protuberant part of a cask.
  • n. A swelling, protuberant part; a bending outward, esp. when caused by pressure.
  • n. The bilge of a vessel. See Bilge, 2.
  • intransitive v. To swell or jut out; to bend outward, as a wall when it yields to pressure; to be protuberant.
  • intransitive v. To bilge, as a ship; to founder.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To swell out; be protuberant.
  • To bilge, as a ship.
  • To cause to swell out and become protuberant.
  • To bilge or stave in the bottom of, as a ship.
  • n. A rounded protuberance; a swelling; a swell; a hump.
  • n. The swirl made by a salmon rising to the surface.
  • n. A rapid rise in price, of stock, grain, cotton, or the like, followed by an equally rapid fall, owing to some temporary causes. The name has reference to the curve in a diagram of prices.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. something that bulges out or is protuberant or projects from its surroundings
  • v. bulge outward
  • v. bulge out; form a bulge outward, or be so full as to appear to bulge
  • v. swell or protrude outwards
  • v. cause to bulge or swell outwards


Middle English, pouch, from Old French bulge, bouge, from Latin bulga, bag, of Celtic origin; see bhelgh- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin bulga "leather bag". Cognates includes bilge, belly, bellows, budget, French bouge, German Balg, etc. (Wiktionary)


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