variants or less commonly briss
: the Jewish rite of circumcision

Examples of bris in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In fact, apart from the near-miss bris debacle, the potentially comic situations never go far enough. Peter Debruge, Variety, 6 Mar. 2024 Allison Redisch, a 37-year-old stay-at-home mom in Washington, D.C., had imagined welcoming family and friends from out of town for her son’s bris. Washington Post, 3 June 2021 Then came the bris epiphany. New York Times, 31 Dec. 2021 Stoppard, who was raised knowing little about Judaism, turned to friends while writing the play, seeking advice for a scene involving a bris and discussing Seders with Fran Lebowitz. Maureen Dowd, New York Times, 7 Sep. 2022 Video from Khan’s own bris ceremony, in 1988, shows a big party, complete with bagel spread—exactly the kind of gathering that was unthinkable during that first pandemic winter, pre-vaccine. Alex Kahn, The New Yorker, 27 July 2022 One such family was that of Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel, who broke the law and held a bris eight days after his son’s birth. Caren Schnur Neile, Sun Sentinel, 5 Sep. 2022 The gravitational pull of tradition had already begun to decline—as Khan mentions, plenty of parents forgo the bris, for good reasons—but the pandemic opened a decisive rupture between past and future. Alex Kahn, The New Yorker, 27 July 2022 Naturally, the situation spirals out of control in the run-up to the baby’s bris. Ryan Parker, The Hollywood Reporter, 24 Mar. 2022

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'bris.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Yiddish bris, short for bris-mile, from Hebrew bĕrīth mīlāh, literally, covenant of circumcision

First Known Use

circa 1934, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of bris was circa 1934

Dictionary Entries Near bris

Cite this Entry

“Bris.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2024.

Kids Definition


variants also briss
: the Jewish rite of circumcision
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