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grow / grō/ • v. (past grew / groō/ ; past part. grown / grōn/ ) [intr.] 1. (of a living thing) undergo natural development by increasing in size and changing physically; progress to maturity: he would watch Nick grow to manhood| [as adj.] (growing) the linguistic skills acquired by the growing child | [as adj.] (grown) the stupidity of grown men hitting a ball with a stick. ∎  (of a plant) germinate and develop: seaweed grows in the ocean. ∎  [tr.] produce by cultivation: more and more land was needed to grow crops for export. ∎  [tr.] allow or cause (a part of the body) to grow or develop: [tr.] she grew her hair long. ∎  (of something abstract) come into existence and develop: the Vietnamese diaspora grew out of their national tragedy. 2. become larger or greater over a period of time; increase: turnover grew to more than $100,000 within three years | [as adj.] (growing) a growing number of people are coming to realize this. ∎  [tr.] cause (something, esp. a business) to expand or increase.See usage below. 3. become gradually or increasingly: sharing our experiences, we grew braver. ∎  (of a person) come to feel or know something over time: she grew to like the friendly, quiet people at the farm. ∎  (grow apart) (of two or more people) become gradually estranged. PHRASES: grow on trees inf. be plentiful or easily obtained: money doesn't grow on trees.PHRASAL VERBS: grow into become as a result of natural development or gradual increase: Swampscott grew into a fishing village of about three hundred people by the 1850s. ∎  become large enough to wear (a garment) comfortably. grow on become gradually more appealing to (someone): a house has to grow on you. grow out disappear because of normal growth: Colette's old perm had almost grown out. grow out of become too large to wear (a garment): blazers that they grew out of. ∎  become too mature to retain (a childish habit): most children grow out of tantrums by the time they're three. grow up advance to maturity; spend one's childhood and adolescence: a young Muslim woman who grew up in Philadelphia. ∎  [often in imper.] begin to behave or think sensibly and realistically: grow up, sister, and come into the real world. ∎  arise; develop: a school of painting grew up in Cuzco. DERIVATIVES: grow·a·ble adj.

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