Definition of brackish
1 : somewhat salty <brackish water>
2 a : not appealing to the taste <brackish tea> b : repulsive
Examples of brackish in a sentence
<the office coffee is often some brackish brew that's been sitting around for a couple of hours>
<the river becomes brackish as we approach the tidemark>
Did You Know?
When the word brackish first appeared in English in the 1500s, it simply meant "salty," as did its Dutch ancestor "brak." Then, as now, brackish water could simply be a mixture of saltwater and freshwater. Since that time, however, "brackish" has developed the additional meanings of "unpalatable" or "distasteful" - presumably because of the undrinkable quality of saltwater. "The brackish water that we drink / Creeps with a loathsome slime, / And the bitter bread they weigh in scales / Is full of chalk and lime." As this use from Oscar Wilde's "Ballad of Reading Gaol" illustrates, brackish water can also include things other than salt that make it unpleasant to drink.
Origin and Etymology of brackish
Dutch brac salty; akin to Middle Low German brac salty
First Known Use: 1538
BRACKISH Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of brackish for English Language Learners
: somewhat salty
BRACKISH Defined for Kids
Definition of brackish for Students
: somewhat salty <brackish water>
Seen and Heard
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