breath

noun
\ ˈbreth How to pronounce breath (audio) \

Definition of breath

1a : air filled with a fragrance or odor
b : a slight indication : suggestion the faintest breath of scandal
2a : the faculty of breathing recovering his breath after the race
b : an act of breathing fought to the last breath
c : opportunity or time to breathe : respite
3 : a slight breeze
4a : air inhaled and exhaled in breathing bad breath
b : something (such as moisture on a cold surface) produced by breath or breathing
5 : a spoken sound : utterance
breath of fresh air
: a welcome or refreshing change
in one breath or in the same breath
: almost simultaneously
out of breath
: breathing very rapidly (as from strenuous exercise)
under one's breath
: so as to be barely audible mumbled something under his breath

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Examples of breath in a Sentence

When Oscar Wilde allegedly gestured at the garish wallpaper in his cheap Parisian hotel room and announced with his dying breath, "Either it goes or I go," he was exhibiting something beyond an irrepressibly brilliant wit. — Tom Robbins, Harper's, September 2004 I ski as far as I can and stop (in these relatively low-altitude coastal mountains, you don't stop for breath the way you sometimes do in Colorado; here you stop when your legs demand a break) … — Lito Tejada-Flores, Skiing, February 1999 gum that freshens your breath It's so cold outside that I can see my breath. My mad dash for the bus left me gasping for breath. I took a long breath before speaking again.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The news feels like the kind of breath of fresh air that the NFL sorely needs right now. Dan Barna, Glamour, "The NFL Will Have Male Cheerleaders Next Season," 7 Aug. 2018 Nick Westbrook, who came within a breath of 1,000 receiving yards in 2016, didn’t make it through the first quarter of the first game before he was lost for the entire campaign. Zach Osterman, Indianapolis Star, "Insider: 5 burning questions facing IU football in 2018," 12 July 2018 Even in the after life, when ain't a breath of me left Future doesn’t only dance with his internal conflicts on Beast Mode or Beast Mode 2. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, "The Cathartic Symphony of Future’s Beast Mode 2," 6 July 2018 Here’s why: ►Less stress: Taking a vacation gives you a chance to catch your breath. Rhonda Abrams, USA TODAY, "Get out! Seriously, small-biz owner: You've got to take a vacation," 27 June 2018 Malaina, 9, and Zidaan, 5, are giddy, their exuberant laughter making their bellies shake and forcing them to catch their breath. Shaila Kapoor, latimes.com, "The moment on the beach is fleeting. Or is it forever?," 25 June 2018 Above all, Mr Sánchez brings a breath of fresh air. The Economist, "Spain’s new prime minister, Pedro Sánchez, assembles a reassuring team," 7 June 2018 This weekend is kind of a new — a breath of fresh air for me. George Sipple, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Grand Prix: Graham Rahal, swept in '17, starts strong in '18," 1 June 2018 Next to none of those minutes were standing in a corner catching his breath while some teammate ran the offense or guarded a key opponent. Rick Bonnell, charlotteobserver, "Biggest of 7 burning NBA Finals questions? What, if anything, is LeBron James' limit.," 30 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'breath.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of breath

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for breath

Middle English breth, from Old English brǣth; akin to Old High German brādam breath, and perhaps to Old English beorma yeast — more at barm

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Statistics for breath

Last Updated

16 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for breath

The first known use of breath was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for breath

breath

noun

English Language Learners Definition of breath

: the air that you take into your lungs and send out from your lungs when you breathe : air that is inhaled and exhaled in breathing
: the ability to breathe freely
: an amount of air that you take into your lungs

breath

noun
\ ˈbreth How to pronounce breath (audio) \

Kids Definition of breath

1 : ability to breathe : ease of breathing I lost my breath for a moment.
2 : air taken in or sent out by the lungs Hold your breath. It's so cold I can see my breath.
3 : a slight breeze a breath of wind
out of breath
: breathing very rapidly as a result of hard exercise
under someone's breath
: very quietly “Don't blow this for me,” Dad said under his breath.— Jack Gantos, Joey Pigza Loses Control

breath

noun
\ ˈbreth How to pronounce breath (audio) \

Medical Definition of breath

1a : the faculty of breathing recovering her breath after the race
b : an act or an instance of breathing or inhaling
2a : air inhaled and exhaled in breathing bad breath
b : something (as moisture on a cold surface) produced by breath or breathing
out of breath
: breathing very rapidly (as from strenuous exercise)

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More from Merriam-Webster on breath

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for breath

Spanish Central: Translation of breath

Nglish: Translation of breath for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of breath for Arabic Speakers

Comments on breath

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