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abuzz

full of excitement and activity

TRANSLATION

abuzz = aufgeregt, begeistert, summend, brodeln abuzz with = erfüllt von [Aufregung etc.] --- GOOGLE INDEX abuzz: approximately 4,300,000 Google hits

STATISTICS

IN THE PRESS

Businesses ABUZZ about workplace rules on social media‎

(Washington Post news headline)

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Financial markets were ABUZZ Thursday with speculation that the Federal Reserve might cut the rate it charges to lend dollars in its currency swap facility with other central banks...

(Wall Street Journal)

Did you
know?

abuzz
adjective

- filled with noise and activity

(Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary)

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The first known use of "abuzz" dates to the 1850s and comes from the work of the very inventive and prolific writer, Charles Dickens. In his novel "A Tale of Two Cities," which is set during the French Revolution, Dickens uses "abuzz" to describe the sound of a Revolutionary courtroom: "The court was all astir and abuzz..."

Abuzz is an example of "onomatopoeia," which is the formation of words in imitation of natural sounds. The "buzz" part of "abuzz" suggests that many voices in use at once sounds more like buzzing than talking, such as a hive of bees.

Apart from the literal sense, abuzz can also be used figuratively to describe a situation in which there is general excitement about something (see first press example from the Washington Post).

But why add the prefix "a" to buzz in order to create a new word? The "a" actually comes from the Old English "an," meaning "on" and was commonly used to form adverbs and adjectives from nouns in Old English. Here are a few other examples:

- abroad = in a foreign country or over a wide area

- alight = burning or illuminated, to come to rest or settle on something, to exit as from a train

- afoot = on foot, walking, in the process of being carried out

- aground = on the ground, onto a shore or reef

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SMUGGLE OWAD into today's conversation

"The entire company is abuzz with rumours about the potential merger."

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