leave of absence, especially that granted to a member of the armed services: a civil servant home on furlough | a six-week furlough in Australia.
• US a temporary release of a convict from prison: a system that allowed murderers to leave prison for weekend furloughs.
• US a layoff, especially a temporary one, from a place of employment.
verb [with object] US
grant leave of absence to.
• lay off (workers), especially temporarily: the President furloughed “nonessential” employees.
A furlough (/ˈfərləʊ/; from Dutch: verlof, "leave of absence") is a temporary leave of employees due to special needs of a company or employer, which may be due to economic conditions at the specific employer or in the economy as a whole. These involuntary furloughs may be short or long term, and many of those affected may seek other temporary employment during that time.
The term furlough in employment can also refer to annual leave, long service leave, time off based on a company-planned schedule. For example, with a "work three weeks, off one week" schedule, a company's workforce is divided into four groups. Each group, in turn, takes a week off on furlough while the remainder work. It can also refer to a vacation from missionary work, military leave, or, in the case of convicts, parole, probation, conjugal visit, or work release.
early 17th century: from Dutch verlof, modeled on German Verlaub, of West Germanic origin and related to leave.
verb [no object]
laugh lightly in a nervous, affected, or silly manner: they giggled at some private joke.
a light, silly laugh.
• the giggles - continuous uncontrollable giggling: I got a fit of the giggles.
Rory couldn't help but giggle at the ridiculous picture: TITTER, snigger, snicker, tee-hee, give a half-suppressed laugh, chuckle, chortle; smirk, sneer, simper.
she suppressed a giggle with difficulty: TITTER, snigger, snicker, tee-hee, half-suppressed laugh, chuckle, chortle; smirk, sneer, simper.
early 16th century: imitative.