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actively and attentively engaged in work or a pastime:
busy with her work.
not at leisure; otherwise engaged:
He couldn’t see any visitors because he was busy.
full of or characterized by activity:
a busy life.
(of a telephone line) in use by a party or parties and not immediately accessible.
officious; meddlesome; prying.
ornate, disparate, or clashing in design or colors; cluttered with small, unharmonious details; fussy:
The rug is too busy for this room.
to keep occupied; make or keep busy:
In summer, he busied himself keeping the lawn in order.
Historical Examples

The Seven who were Hanged Leonid Andreyev
The Gold Girl James B. Hendryx
Dame Care Hermann Sudermann
Poor Folk Fyodor Dostoyevsky
In Search of El Dorado Alexander MacDonald
In the Morning of Time Charles G. D. Roberts
Paul Patoff F. Marion Crawford
The Mayor’s Wife Anna Katherine Green
A Strange Story, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
The Pioneer Boys on the Great Lakes Harrison Adams

adjective busier, busiest
actively or fully engaged; occupied
crowded with or characterized by activity: a busy day
(mainly US & Canadian) (of a room, telephone line, etc) in use; engaged
overcrowded with detail: a busy painting
meddlesome; inquisitive; prying
verb busies, busying, busied
(transitive) to make or keep (someone, esp oneself) busy; occupy

busy as a beaver
busy work


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  • Busywork

    work assigned for the sake of looking or keeping busy. Contemporary Examples America’s Prison System: Not Faring Well Either James Poulos April 4, 2014 How Space Agencies Are Preparing for a Mission to Mars Josh Dzieza February 11, 2011

  • But

    on the contrary; yet: My brother went, but I did not. except; save: She was so overcome with grief she could do nothing but weep. unless; if not; except that (followed by a clause, often with that expressed): Nothing would do but that I should come in. without the circumstance that: It never rains but […]

  • But-and-ben

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