Burst Burst, v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Burst}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Bursting}. The past participle bursten is obsolete.] [OE. bersten, bresten, AS. berstan (pers. sing. berste, imp. sing. b[ae]rst, imp. pl. burston, p. p. borsten); akin to D. bersten, G. bersten, OHG. brestan, OS. brestan, Icel. bresta, Sw. brista, Dan. briste. Cf. {Brast}, {Break}.] 1. To fly apart or in pieces; of break open; to yield to force or pressure, especially to a sudden and violent exertion of force, or to pressure from within; to explode; as, the boiler had burst; the buds will burst in spring. [1913 Webster]

From the egg that soon Bursting with kindly rupture, forth disclosed Their callow young. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

Note: Often used figuratively, as of the heart, in reference to a surcharge of passion, grief, desire, etc. [1913 Webster]

No, no, my heart will burst, an if I speak: And I will speak, that so my heart may burst. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

2. To exert force or pressure by which something is made suddenly to give way; to break through obstacles or limitations; hence, to appear suddenly and unexpectedly or unaccountably, or to depart in such manner; -- usually with some qualifying adverb or preposition, as forth, out, away, into, upon, through, etc. [1913 Webster]

Tears, such as angels weep, burst forth. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

And now you burst (ah cruel!) from my arms. --Pope. [1913 Webster]

A resolved villain Whose bowels suddenly burst out. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

We were the first that ever burst Into that silent sea. --Coleridge. [1913 Webster]

To burst upon him like an earthquake. --Goldsmith. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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