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American Dictionary of the English Language

Webster's Dictionary 1828

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Burden


BURD'EN, noun burd'n; written also burthen. [Latin fero, or porto.]

1. That which is borne or carried; a load. Hence,

2. That which is borne with labor or difficulty; that which is grievous, wearisome or oppressive.

3. A birth.

4. The verse repeated in a song, or the return of the theme at the end of each verse; the chorus; so called from the application of this word to the drone or base, and the pipe or string which plays it, in an instrument. A chord which is to be divided, to perform the intervals of music, when open and undivided, is also called the burden

5. In common language, that which is often repeated; a subject on which one dwells.

6. A fixed quantity of certain commodities; as a burden of gad steel, 120 pounds.

7. The contents of a ship; the quantity or number of tons, a vessel will carry; as a ship of a hundred tons burden

8. A club. [Not in use.]

BURD'EN, verb transitive burd'n. To load; to lay on a heavy load; to incumber with weight. Hence,

1. To oppress with any thing grievous; as, to burden a nation with taxes.

2. To surcharge; as, to burden the memory.