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to take or obtain with the promise to return the same or an equivalent:
Our neighbor borrowed my lawn mower.
to use, appropriate, or introduce from another source or from a foreign source:
to borrow an idea from the opposition; to borrow a word from French.
Arithmetic. (in subtraction) to take from one denomination and add to the next lower.
to borrow something:
Don’t borrow unless you intend to repay.

to sail close to the wind; luff.
to sail close to the shore.

Golf. to putt on other than a direct line from the lie of the ball to the hole, to compensate for the incline or roll of the green.
borrow trouble, to do something that is unnecessary and may cause future harm or inconvenience.
Historical Examples

Elsie’s Womanhood Martha Finley
American Boy’s Life of Theodore Roosevelt Edward Stratemeyer
The Young Maiden A. B. (Artemas Bowers) Muzzey
Otherwise Phyllis Meredith Nicholson
Vistas of New York Brander Matthews
The Pioneer Boys of the Yellowstone Harrison Adams
Aims and Aids for Girls and Young Women George Sumner Weaver
Timothy Crump’s Ward Horatio Alger
Leaves of Life Margaret Bird Steinmetz
The Master’s Violin Myrtle Reed

to obtain or receive (something, such as money) on loan for temporary use, intending to give it, or something equivalent or identical, back to the lender
to adopt (ideas, words, etc) from another source; appropriate
(not standard) to lend
(golf) to putt the ball uphill of the direct path to the hole
(intransitive) (golf) (of a ball) to deviate from a straight path because of the slope of the ground
(golf) a deviation of a ball from a straight path because of the slope of the ground: a left borrow
material dug from a borrow pit to provide fill at another
living on borrowed time

living an unexpected extension of life
close to death

George (Henry). 1803–81, English traveller and writer. His best-known works are the semiautobiographical novels of Gypsy life and language, Lavengro (1851) and its sequel The Romany Rye (1857)

Go out of one’s way to do something that may be harmful, as in Just sign the will—telling her about it ahead of time is borrowing trouble. [ Mid-1800s ]
Also see: ask for, def. 2.
In addition to the idiom beginning with


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