burden


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bur·den

 (bûr′dn)
n.
1. Something that is carried.
2.
a. Something that is emotionally difficult to bear.
b. A source of great worry or stress; weight: The burden of economic sacrifice rests on the workers of the plant.
3. A responsibility or duty: The burden of organizing the campaign fell to me.
4. A principal or recurring idea; a theme: "The burden of what he said was to defend enthusiastically the conservative aristocracy" (J.A. Froude).
5. Music
a. A drone, as of a bagpipe or pedal point.
b. Archaic The chorus or refrain of a composition.
c. Archaic The bass accompaniment to a song.
6. Nautical
a. The amount of cargo that a vessel can carry.
b. The weight of the cargo carried by a vessel at one time.
7. The amount of a disease-causing entity present in an organism.
tr.v. bur·dened, bur·den·ing, bur·dens
1. To cause difficulty or distress to; distress or oppress.
2. To load or overload.

[Middle English, from Old English byrthen; see bher- in Indo-European roots. Noun, senses 4 and 5, influenced by bourdon.]
Synonyms: burden, affliction, albatross, cross, millstone, trial, tribulation
These nouns denote something onerous or troublesome: the burden of a guilty conscience; considered the television an affliction that destroyed the spirit of community; a poorly built home that became his albatross; an unhappy marriage that became a cross to bear; a routine duty that turned into a millstone; a troublemaker who is a trial to the teacher; suffered many tribulations in rising from poverty. See Also Synonyms at substance.

burden

(ˈbɜːdən)
n
1. something that is carried; load
2. something that is exacting, oppressive, or difficult to bear: the burden of responsibility.
3. (Nautical Terms) nautical
a. the cargo capacity of a ship
b. the weight of a ship's cargo
vb (tr)
4. (sometimes foll by up) to put or impose a burden on; load
5. to weigh down; oppress: the old woman was burdened with cares.
[Old English byrthen; related to beran to bear1, Old Frisian berthene burden, Old High German burdin]

burden

(ˈbɜːdən)
n
1. (Music, other) a line of words recurring at the end of each verse of a ballad or similar song; chorus or refrain
2. (Rhetoric) the principal or recurrent theme of a speech, book, etc
3. (Music, other) another word for bourdon
[C16: from Old French bourdon bass horn, droning sound, of imitative origin]

bur•den1

(ˈbɜr dn)
n.
1. that which is carried; load.
2. that which is borne with difficulty; onus: the burden of leadership.
3.
a. the weight of a ship's cargo.
b. the carrying capacity of a ship.
v.t.
5. to load heavily.
6. to load oppressively; trouble.
[before 1000; Middle English, variant of burthen, Old English byrthen]

bur•den2

(ˈbɜr dn)

n.
1. an often repeated main point, message, or idea.
2. a musical refrain; chorus.
[1275–1325; Middle English bordoun, burdoun < Old French bourdon droning sound, instrument making such a sound]

burden

, refrain, chorus - The burden is the main theme or gist of a speech, book, or argument—or the refrain or chorus of a song.
See also related terms for refrain.

Burden

 a fixed quantity of a commodity; a heavy load; the chorus of a song. See also charge, load, trust.
Examples: burden of armour, 1595; of brass [debts], 1601; of corn, 1523; of despair, 1812; of gold, 1440; of rushes, 1560; of sin, 1303; of sorrows, 1374; of steel [120 lb.]; of thorns, 1449; of verse, 1598; of weeds, 1527.

Burden

 

albatross around the neck Burden, weight; any inhibiting encumbrance. In Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (1798), the slayer of the albatross—a bird of good omen to sailors—was punished by having the dead bird hung about his neck. Though within the context of the poem the dead albatross symbolizes guilt and punishment for sin, its contemporary use rarely carries this connotation. Often an albatross around one’s neck is no more than a burdensome annoyance, a “drag” that inhibits one’s freedom or lessens one’s pleasure.

ball and chain A wife; one’s girl friend or mistress; any person perceived as a burden or hindrance. This figurative meaning of ball and chain is derived from the iron ball which is secured by a chain to the leg of a prisoner in order to prevent escape. Insofar as having a wife inhibits one’s freedom, this slang expression is apt

He deliberately attempted to commit suicide by askin’ me “How’s the ball and chain?” meanin’ my wife. (Collier’s, June 25, 1921)

cross to bear A painful burden or affliction; an oppressive encumbrance. The expression derives from the heavy cross which Jesus was forced to carry up Mount Calvary, and upon which he was subsequently crucified. Though the phrase most often applies to serious illness, pain, or handicaps, it is frequently extended to include any bothersome annoyance, any unpleasant person or circumstance that must be endured.

a millstone around the neck A heavy burden, an onus, a cross. A millstone is either of a pair of round, weighty stones between which grain and other like materials are ground in a mill.

The mill-stone intended for the necks of those vermin … the dealers in corn, was found to fall upon the heads of the consumers. (Jeremy Bentham, Defence of Usury, 1787)

The metaphor is said to have been suggested by the Biblical passage (Matthew 18:6) in which Jesus warns those who would corrupt the pure and humble nature of children:

But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.

a monkey on one’s back A depressing, often controlling burden; a cross to bear; an addiction or dependence. This phrase may be a variation of the obsolete a turkey on one’s back, but the implication remains the same: an addict carries an extra burden, one demanding a large, if not total, commitment of time, effort, and money to support.

Having a monkey on your back … always worked out logically to be the first purpose in a junkie’s life. (E. R. Johnson, God Keepers, 1970)

white elephant An unwanted or useless possession that is difficult to dispose of; a possession that costs more to keep and maintain than it is worth. This expression probably alludes to the albino elephants which were once considered sacred in Siam (now Thailand). Since an elephant of any color is inconvenient and expensive to own, it was purportedly a custom for a king to bestow one of these unique white elephants as a gift upon a courtier or other person whom he wished to subject to financial ruin. In the United States, tag sales, garage sales, and rummage sales are often appropriately nicknamed white elephant sales.

burden


Past participle: burdened
Gerund: burdening

Imperative
burden
burden
Present
I burden
you burden
he/she/it burdens
we burden
you burden
they burden
Preterite
I burdened
you burdened
he/she/it burdened
we burdened
you burdened
they burdened
Present Continuous
I am burdening
you are burdening
he/she/it is burdening
we are burdening
you are burdening
they are burdening
Present Perfect
I have burdened
you have burdened
he/she/it has burdened
we have burdened
you have burdened
they have burdened
Past Continuous
I was burdening
you were burdening
he/she/it was burdening
we were burdening
you were burdening
they were burdening
Past Perfect
I had burdened
you had burdened
he/she/it had burdened
we had burdened
you had burdened
they had burdened
Future
I will burden
you will burden
he/she/it will burden
we will burden
you will burden
they will burden
Future Perfect
I will have burdened
you will have burdened
he/she/it will have burdened
we will have burdened
you will have burdened
they will have burdened
Future Continuous
I will be burdening
you will be burdening
he/she/it will be burdening
we will be burdening
you will be burdening
they will be burdening
Present Perfect Continuous
I have been burdening
you have been burdening
he/she/it has been burdening
we have been burdening
you have been burdening
they have been burdening
Future Perfect Continuous
I will have been burdening
you will have been burdening
he/she/it will have been burdening
we will have been burdening
you will have been burdening
they will have been burdening
Past Perfect Continuous
I had been burdening
you had been burdening
he/she/it had been burdening
we had been burdening
you had been burdening
they had been burdening
Conditional
I would burden
you would burden
he/she/it would burden
we would burden
you would burden
they would burden
Past Conditional
I would have burdened
you would have burdened
he/she/it would have burdened
we would have burdened
you would have burdened
they would have burdened
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.burden - an onerous or difficult concernburden - an onerous or difficult concern; "the burden of responsibility"; "that's a load off my mind"
headache, worry, vexation, concern - something or someone that causes anxiety; a source of unhappiness; "New York traffic is a constant concern"; "it's a major worry"
dead weight - an oppressive encumbrance
fardel - a burden (figuratively in the form of a bundle)
imposition - an uncalled-for burden; "he listened but resented the imposition"
pill - something unpleasant or offensive that must be tolerated or endured; "his competitor's success was a bitter pill to take"
2.burden - weight to be borne or conveyedburden - weight to be borne or conveyed  
burthen - a variant of `burden'
dead load - a constant load on a structure (e.g. a bridge) due to the weight of the supported structure itself
live load, superload - a variable load on a structure (e.g. a bridge) such as moving traffic
millstone - any load that is difficult to carry
overburden, overload - an excessive burden
overload - an electrical load that exceeds the available electrical power
weight - an artifact that is heavy
3.burden - the central meaning or theme of a speech or literary work
meaning, signification, import, significance - the message that is intended or expressed or signified; "what is the meaning of this sentence"; "the significance of a red traffic light"; "the signification of Chinese characters"; "the import of his announcement was ambiguous"
4.burden - the central idea that is expanded in a document or discourse
idea, thought - the content of cognition; the main thing you are thinking about; "it was not a good idea"; "the thought never entered my mind"
Verb1.burden - weight down with a loadburden - weight down with a load    
overburden - load with excessive weight
plumb - weight with lead
charge - fill or load to capacity; "charge the wagon with hay"
saddle - load or burden; encumber; "he saddled me with that heavy responsibility"
disburden, unburden - take the burden off; remove the burden from; "unburden the donkey"
2.burden - impose a task upon, assign a responsibility to; "He charged her with cleaning up all the files over the weekend"
overburden - burden with too much work or responsibility
bear down - exert a force or cause a strain upon; "This tax bears down on the lower middle class"
flood out, overwhelm, deluge - charge someone with too many tasks
command, require - make someone do something
adjure - command solemnly

burden

noun
1. trouble, care, worry, trial, weight, responsibility, stress, strain, anxiety, sorrow, grievance, affliction, onus, albatross, millstone, encumbrance Her illness will be an impossible burden on him.
2. load, weight, pack, bundle, cargo, freight, bale, consignment, encumbrance, charge She heaved her burden into the back.
verb
Related words
adjective onerous

burden 1

noun
1. Something carried physically:
Sports: impost.
2. Something hard to bear physically or emotionally:
3. A duty or responsibility that is a source of anxiety, worry, or hardship:
Informal: headache.
4. An act or course of action that is demanded of one, as by position, custom, law, or religion:
verb
To place a burden or heavy load on:

burden 2

noun
1. The thread or current of thought uniting or occurring in all the elements of a text or discourse:
2. The general sense or significance, as of an action or statement:
Translations
حملحِمْلٌعِب ءعبءعِبْء
břemenobříměobtěžovattíhazatěžovat
byrdebebyrde
taakkavastuukuormakuormata
teret
teher
byrîiíòyngja
荷物
apkrautiapsunkintinašta
apgrūtinātkravanastanastu nesējs dzīvnieksslogs
bremeno
tovor
börda
ภาระ
yükyüklemekağır yük altına sokmak
gánh nặng

burden

[ˈbɜːdn]
A. N
1. (= load) → carga f; (= weight) → peso m
2. (fig) [of taxes, years] → peso m, carga f
the burden of proof lies with himél lleva la carga de la prueba
to be a burden to sbser una carga para algn
he carries a heavy burdentiene que cargar con una gran responsabilidad
to make sb's life a burdenamargar la vida a algn
3. (Naut) → arqueo m
4. (= chief theme) [of speech etc] → tema m principal
5. (= chorus) [of song] → estribillo m
B. VTcargar (with con) to be burdened withtener que cargar con
don't burden me with your troublesno me vengas con tus problemas

burden

[ˈbɜːrdən]
n
(= load) → fardeau m, charge f
[responsibility] → fardeau m, charge f
to be a burden to sb, to be a burden on sb → être un fardeau pour qn
the burden of proof → la charge de la preuve
vt
to burden sb with sth [+ problem, news] → accabler qn de qch

burden

1
n
(lit)Last f; it puts too much of a burden on him/the enginedas überlastet ihn/den Motor; beast of burdenLasttier nt
(fig)Belastung f(on, to für); he has such a burden of responsibilityer hat eine schwere Last an Verantwortung zu tragen; burden of taxationsteuerliche Belastung, Steuerlast f; I don’t want to be a burden to youich möchte Ihnen nicht zur Last fallen; the burden of proof is on himer muss den Beweis dafür erbringen or liefern; (Jur) → er trägt die Beweislast
(Naut) → Tragfähigkeit f, → Tragkraft f
vtbelasten; to be burdened by guilt/regretvon Schuldgefühlen/Bedauern geplagt sein

burden

2
n
(of song)Refrain m, → Kehrreim m
(of speech, essay etc)Grundgedanke m

burden

[ˈbɜːdn]
1. n (load) → carico, peso (fig) (of years, responsibility) → peso; (of taxes, payment) → onere m
the burden of proof lies with him → spetta a lui l'onere della prova
to be a burden to sb → essere di peso a qn
2. vt to burden (with) (cares) → opprimere (con)
burdened with debts → oberato/a di debiti

burden

(ˈbəːdn) noun
1. something to be carried. He carried a heavy burden up the hill; The ox is sometimes a beast of burden (= an animal that carries things).
2. something difficult to carry or withstand. the burden of taxation.
verb
to put a responsibility etc on (someone). burdened with cares.

burden

عِبْء břemeno byrde Last φορτίο carga taakka fardeau teret fardello 荷物 last byrde ciężar carga обуза börda ภาระ yük gánh nặng 负担

bur·den

vt. agobiar;
vr. agobiarse.

burden

n carga; tumor — carga tumoral
References in classic literature ?
Each of you told what your burden was just now, except Beth.
What have I done that this burden should be laid on me?
LAST summer I happened to be crossing the plains of Iowa in a season of intense heat, and it was my good fortune to have for a traveling companion James Quayle Burden--Jim Burden, as we still call him in the West.
As she crossed it with her precious burden, she looked constantly and restlessly from side to side.
It was the first opportunity possessed by Duncan and his companions to view the marked lineaments of either of their Indian attendants, and each individual of the party felt relieved from a burden of doubt, as the proud and determined, though wild expression of the features of the young warrior forced itself on their notice.
I meant to be such a help to John, such a real rest and comfort, and here I am a comparative burden already!
The cups--not having been used, perhaps, since Hepzibah's youth--had contracted no small burden of dust, which Phoebe washed away with so much care and delicacy as to satisfy even the proprietor of this invaluable china.
Not so with our old Inspector One brief sigh sufficed to carry off the entire burden of these dismal reminiscences.
The shoulders have known no ignobler burden than iron mail, and they will not stoop.
She had made a visit of a week at the brick house; and Miranda's impression, conveyed in privacy to Jane, was that Hannah was close as the bark of a tree, and consid'able selfish too; that when she'd clim' as fur as she could in the world, she'd kick the ladder out from under her, everlastin' quick; that, on being sounded as to her ability to be of use to the younger children in the future, she said she guessed she'd done her share a'ready, and she wan't goin' to burden Will with her poor relations.
Before he had accomplished half the distance he was so tired that, finding himself in a quiet street where the pavement was sprinkled with rose water, and a cool breeze was blowing, he set his burden upon the ground, and sat down to rest in the shade of a grand house.
that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, to assure the survival and the success of liberty.