Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “busy”

busy

adjective uk   /ˈbɪz.i/ us  

busy adjective (DOING THINGS)

A2 If you are busy, you are working hard, or giving your attention to a particular thing: Mum was busy in the kitchen. The kids are busy with their homework. She's busy writing out the wedding invitations. I've got plenty of jobs to keep you busy. He was too busy talking to notice us come in. A1 A busy place is full of activity or people: a busy restaurant Their house is near a very busy road. A2 In a busy period, you have a lot of things to do: I've got a busy week ahead of me. Have a rest - you've had a busy day. (UK also engaged) If a phone line is busy, someone is using it: I tried calling you but the line was busy.

busy adjective (WITH PATTERNS)

disapproving having too much decoration or too many colours: The jacket was a bit too busy for my tastes - I'd prefer something plainer.

busy

verb uk   /ˈbɪz.i/ us  
busy yourself to make the time pass by doing something: I busied myself with tidying up my desk.
(Definition of busy from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of busy?
Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Complexity, but you might be interested in these topics from the Easy and difficult topic area:

Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “busy” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

monster

any imaginary frightening creature, especially one that is large and strange

Word of the Day

What’s that lovely smell?

by Kate Woodford,
October 29, 2014
As adult humans, we can distinguish about 10,000 different smells. It’s no wonder, then, that we have so many words and expressions to describe them. This week we’re taking a look at those smell words – words that describe good smells and words that describe bad smells. Most smell words are either

Read More 

high-frequency trading noun

October 27, 2014
a type of stock market trading that uses very complex technology to trade extremely quickly, often making tiny profits which nevertheless add up to substantial sums Lewis’s book, Flash Boys, is driving a huge amount of attention toward the topic of high frequency trading, and it has rekindled some of

Read More