bro·​mide | \ ˈbrō-ˌmīd How to pronounce bromide (audio) \

Definition of bromide

1 : a binary compound of bromine with another element or a radical including some (such as potassium bromide) used as sedatives
2a : a commonplace or tiresome person : bore
b : a commonplace or hackneyed statement or notion

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Did You Know?

After bromine was discovered in 1827, chemists could not resist experimenting with the new element. It didn't take long before they found uses for its compounds, in particular potassium bromide. Potassium bromide was used as a sedative to treat everything from epilepsy to sleeplessness, and by the 20th century, bromide was being used figuratively to apply to anything or anyone that might put one to sleep because of commonness or just plain dullness. Today, bromides are no longer an ingredient in sedative preparations, but we can still feel the effects of figurative bromides as we encounter them in our daily routines.

Examples of bromide in a Sentence

His speech had nothing more to offer than the usual bromides about how everyone needs to work together. a newspaper editorial offering the timeworn bromide that people should settle their differences peacefully
Recent Examples on the Web And anyone who misunderstands this will continue projecting onto religious conservatives the usual tired bromides that refuse to reckon with a complicated situation. Andrew T. Walker, National Review, "Understanding Why Religious Conservatives Would Vote for Trump," 10 Feb. 2020 At roughly $2 trillion, the measure had something for almost everyone in Congress, a legislative bromide that helped soothe partisan heartburn for all but those lawmakers who still fret about the soaring federal debt. Christal Hayes, USA TODAY, "How a divided Congress united behind a $2 trillion package to confront the coronavirus crisis," 26 Mar. 2020 But Stephens isn’t the only conservative offering a too-late bromide against the president: Last month, Christianity Today published an editorial calling for the removal of Trump from office—a genuinely surprising development from the publication. Tina Vasquez, The New Republic, "Republicans Want to Make White Grievance Genteel Again," 6 Jan. 2020 The three drugs are: midazolam, vecuronium bromide and potassium chloride. USA TODAY, "Rock slides wreak havoc, close encounters with great white shark, gray whale: News from around our 50 states," 14 Feb. 2020 For years, the Brady bromide was that the quarterback’s favorite receiver was the open one. Globe Staff,, "Julian Edelman is money, but Tom Brady needs to spread the wealth," 14 Dec. 2019 The three drugs are: midazolam, vecuronium bromide and potassium chloride. CBS News, "Oklahoma's attorney general says executions will resume after 5 year hold," 13 Feb. 2020 The type of stuff teams can write off with bromides about fresh starts and clean slates., "Before this, Brown simply had sports baggage — being self-absorbed, selfish, unreliable, and temperamental. The type of stuff teams can write off with bromides about fresh starts and clean slates. The type of stuff fans forgive at the sight of preferred laundry.," 12 Sep. 2019 But patience is waning for Perdue’s sunny bromides in rural America, where farm bankruptcies and loan delinquencies are rising. Washington Post, "Trump’s trade wars are hurting farmers. Can Sonny Perdue keep them happy?," 11 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bromide.' 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 bromide

1830, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for bromide

Time Traveler

The first known use of bromide was in 1830

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Statistics for bromide

Last Updated

26 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Bromide.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for bromide


How to pronounce bromide (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of bromide

: a drug that makes a person calm
: a statement that is intended to make people feel happier or calmer but that is not original or effective


bro·​mide | \ ˈbrō-ˌmīd How to pronounce bromide (audio) \

Medical Definition of bromide

1 : a binary compound of bromine with another element or a radical including some (as potassium bromide) used as sedatives
2 : a dose of bromide taken usually as a sedative

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More from Merriam-Webster on bromide

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bromide

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bromide

Britannica English: Translation of bromide for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about bromide

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