Meanings

1.
to burn, to be on fire
(NOT for burning something. "brennen" is what the object does, not what you do to the object. Also not used for figuratively "being on fire" in the sense of "having a run".)
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2.
to have a strong passion for
("brennen für" - not very common.)
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Word Family

The core idea of this root was:

boiling, bubbling, burning

This is still visible in some of the offspring, but some are fairly obscure and surprising, at least for me.
Here’s a little (incomplete) overview:

  • braise (“bubbling in pot”)
  • brew (“make bubble”)
  • broth (“bubbly thing”)
  • breed (the connection is the sense of “keeping warm to hatch”)
  • brood (“hatch by heat, then anger”)
  • ferment (“make bubble”)
  • effervesce (“bubbling”)
  • Brazil (originally, it was a word for a tree for red dye (like burning ember) from India, but the was used for the lands of Brazil, because similar wood grew there)
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