Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary
1

birch

play
noun \ˈbərch\

Simple Definition of birch

  • : a type of tree that has outer bark which can be pulled off easily

  • : the hard, pale wood of the birch

  • the birch : the punishment of being hit with a birch stick

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of birch

  1. 1 :  any of a genus (Betula of the family Betulaceae, the birch family) of monoecious deciduous trees or shrubs having simple petioled leaves and typically a layered membranous outer bark that peels readily

  2. 2 :  the hard pale close-grained wood of a birch

  3. 3 :  a birch rod or bundle of twigs for flogging

birch

or

birchen

play \ˈbər-chən\ adjective

Examples of birch in a sentence

  1. a cabinet made of birch

  2. In those days, schoolchildren got the birch when they misbehaved.



Origin and Etymology of birch

Middle English, from Old English beorc; akin to Old High German birka birch, Old English beorht bright, and probably to Latin fraxinus ash tree — more at bright


First Known Use: before 12th century


2

birch

verb

Definition of birch

  1. transitive verb
  2. :  to beat with or as if with a birch :  whip



Examples of birch in a sentence

  1. <students at the private school were once routinely birched for violating the rules>

  2. <always a stern disciplinarian, our father birched anyone who talked back>



1830

First Known Use of birch

1830

Rhymes with birch



BIRCH Defined for Kids

birch

play
noun \ˈbərch\

Definition of birch for Students

  1. :  a tree with hard wood and a smooth bark that can be peeled off in thin layers





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up birch? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

of, relating to, or near a shore

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

lavender-fields-in-france

Which of these is a synonym of caesura?

rebellion torrent megillah interruption
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ