The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Burst \Burst\, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Burst; p. pr. & vb. n.
Bursting. The past participle bursten is obsolete.] [OE.
bersten, bresten, AS. berstan (pers. sing. berste, imp. sing.
b[ae]rst, imp. pl. burston, p. p. borsten); akin to D.
bersten, G. bersten, OHG. brestan, OS. brestan, Icel. bresta,
Sw. brista, Dan. briste. Cf. Brast, Break.]
1. To fly apart or in pieces; of break open; to yield to
force or pressure, especially to a sudden and violent
exertion of force, or to pressure from within; to explode;
as, the boiler had burst; the buds will burst in spring.
From the egg that soon
Bursting with kindly rupture, forth disclosed
Their callow young. --Milton.
Note: Often used figuratively, as of the heart, in reference
to a surcharge of passion, grief, desire, etc.
No, no, my heart will burst, an if I speak:
And I will speak, that so my heart may burst.
2. To exert force or pressure by which something is made
suddenly to give way; to break through obstacles or
limitations; hence, to appear suddenly and unexpectedly or
unaccountably, or to depart in such manner; -- usually
with some qualifying adverb or preposition, as forth, out,
away, into, upon, through, etc.
Tears, such as angels weep, burst forth. --Milton.
And now you burst (ah cruel!) from my arms. --Pope.
A resolved villain
Whose bowels suddenly burst out. --Shak.
We were the first that ever burst
Into that silent sea. --Coleridge.
To burst upon him like an earthquake. --Goldsmith.
Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0:
158 Moby Thesaurus words for "bursting":
SRO, abundant, agog, alive with, aquiver, aroused, atingle,
atwitter, banging, blasting, bloated, blooming, bountiful, brimful,
brimming, bristling, bulging, bursting out, capacity, carried away,
chock-full, choked, chuck-full, congested, copious, cracking,
cram-full, crammed, crashing, crawling, creative, crowded,
crowding, detonating, distended, drenched, ebullient, effervescent,
eruptive, excited, exhilarated, explodable, exploding, explosible,
explosive, exuberant, farci, fecund, fertile, filled,
filled to overflowing, fired, flapping, flourishing, flush,
fructiferous, fruitful, full, full to bursting, fulminating,
generous, glutted, gorged, high, hopped up, hyperemic, impassioned,
in profusion, in spate, inflamed, jam-packed, jammed, keyed up,
knocking, lathered up, lavish, lush, luxuriant, manic, moved,
overblown, overburdened, overcharged, overfed, overflowing,
overfraught, overfreighted, overfull, overladen, overloaded,
overstocked, overstuffed, oversupplied, overweighted, packed,
packed like sardines, plenary, plenteous, plentiful, plethoric,
popping, populous, pregnant, prodigal, productive, profuse,
proliferating, proliferous, prolific, rapping, ready to burst,
replete, rich, rife, round, roused, running over, satiated,
saturated, seminal, slapping, slatting, soaked, standing room only,
steamed up, stimulated, stirred, stirred up, studded, stuffed,
stuffed up, superabundant, supercharged, supersaturated,
surcharged, surfeited, swarming, swollen, tapping, teeming, thick,
thick as hail, thick with, thick-coming, thrilled, thriving,
thronged, thronging, tingling, tingly, topful, turned-on, uberous,
volcanic, whipped up, worked up, wrought up, yeasty