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Difference between Born or Borne?

born or borne

When discussing Born and Borne, it’s essential to understand the grammatical context in which each term is used. Born is primarily associated with birth, indicating the beginning of life. It’s used as an adjective or a part of a passive verb construction, such as “to be born.” On the other hand, Borne is the past participle of the verb “to bear,” which means to carry, support, endure, or give birth to. The distinction between these two terms lies in their application to different contexts and meanings.

Part of SpeechAdjective/VerbVerb (Past Participle)
MeaningComing into life or existenceCarried, supported, or endured
Usage ContextRefers to birthRefers to carrying, supporting, enduring, or in the context of childbirth when used with “be
ExamplesHe was born in 1990.The responsibilities are borne by the leader.
definition of born

Difference Between Born and Borne

Definition of Born

Born is used to describe the commencement of life. It’s typically employed to denote when someone was given birth to or came into existence. The term is often seen in phrases like “newly born” or when mentioning the place or time someone was born.

Definition of Borne

Borne is the past participle of “bear,” relating to carrying, supporting, bearing weight, enduring stress or hardships, and in specific contexts, giving birth. It’s utilized in various expressions to convey the notion of something being carried or supported, either physically or metaphorically.

Origin of Born

The term Born comes from the Old English “boren,” a past participle of “beran,” meaning to bear, bring; to bring forth, give birth to; to be born. It specifically shifted to its current usage in relation to birth from the 14th century onwards.

Origin of Borne

Borne also derives from the Old English “beran,” which means to carry, bring forth, or endure. Over time, its usage expanded to encompass a broad range of meanings related to carrying and support, as well as enduring hardships.


  • Born: /bɔːrn/
  • Borne: /bɔːrn/

The pronunciation of both words is identical, contributing to the confusion between them. However, their meanings and contexts of use are distinct.

Comparing Born and Borne

UsageSpecific to the context of birthBroad, including carrying, supporting, and enduring
FormOnly used in passive constructions related to birthUsed in various constructions, including active and passive voices
ContextPersonal, related to individuals’ birthVaried, can be physical, metaphorical, or related to tasks and responsibilities

Usage in Sentences with Explanations

Use of Born in Sentences

  1. She was born on a rainy day, indicating the specific day of her birth.
  2. Every star is born from cosmic dust, explaining the origin of stars.
  3. He was born into a family of musicians, showing the environment or family one is born into.
  4. A leader is not born but made, suggesting that leadership qualities are developed, not innate.
  5. The idea was born out of necessity, indicating the origin of an idea from a specific need.

Use of Borne in Sentences

  1. The weight of the world is borne by those who can handle it, illustrating the metaphorical bearing of burdens.
  2. The costs were borne by the company, indicating financial responsibility.
  3. The news was hardly borne by her, showing difficulty in accepting something.
  4. Diseases can be borne by water, meaning diseases can be carried or transmitted through water.
  5. She has borne three children, used in the context of childbirth to indicate someone has given birth to children.


Understanding the difference between Born and Borne is crucial for accurate communication. Born pertains specifically to the act or condition of coming into life, while Borne refers to carrying, enduring, or, in certain contexts, childbirth. Recognizing the correct context and meaning of each term enhances clarity and precision in language use.

Commonly Asked Questions

  • What is the main difference between “born” and “borne”?
    • Born relates to birth; Borne involves carrying or enduring.
  • Can “borne” be used in the context of birth?
    • Yes, but only in specific phrases like “she has borne a child.”
  • Are “born” and “borne” interchangeable?
    • No, they serve different grammatical functions and meanings.
  • How can I remember the difference between “born” and “borne”?
    • Associate Born with Birth and Borne with Bearing (carrying or enduring).
definition of borne


What is the difference between “born” and “borne”?

“Born” and “borne” are two different words with distinct meanings and uses. Born” is the past participle of the verb “bear,” and it refers to the act of coming into existence or being brought into life. On the other hand, “borne” is also the past participle of the verb “bear,” but it is used to indicate carrying or supporting something. While both terms are derived from the same root word, their applications vary depending on the context.

What is the definition of “born” and how is it used?

Born” is defined as the act of coming into existence or being brought into life. It is commonly used to refer to the birth of a person or the beginning of something. For example, we can say, “She was born on July 10th” or “The idea was born out of necessity.” Other uses of “born” include expressing innate qualities or characteristics, such as “He was born with a talent for singing” or “She was born to be a leader.”

What is the definition of “borne” and how is it used?

“Borne” is the past participle of the verb “bear,” which means to carry or support. It is used to indicate the action of carrying or enduring something. For instance, we can say, “She has borne the burden of responsibilities” or “The ship’s hull was well-borne by the strong frame.” “Borne” can also be used in a figurative sense, such as “The news was borne on the wings of rumors,” meaning it was conveyed or spread through gossip or hearsay.

When should I use “born” versus “borne”?

Knowing when to use “born” or “borne” depends on the specific context and intended meaning. Use “born” to describe the act of coming into existence or the birth of a person or idea. Use “borne” to indicate carrying or supporting something physically or metaphorically. If you are referring to a newborn baby or someone’s birth, “born” would be the appropriate term. However, if you are discussing the act of carrying a heavy load or enduring something, “borne” is the correct word to use. Remember to pay attention to the verb tense and surrounding context to determine the correct usage.

Jessica Smith

Jessica Smith

Jessica Smith, writer at, blends creativity with insight, exploring technology, culture, and psychology. With a background in English Literature, she crafts engaging stories inspired by nature and urban life. Outside writing, she enjoys exploring and continuous learning.View Author posts

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