brute

adjective
\ˈbrüt \

Definition of brute 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of or relating to beasts the ways of the brute world

2 : inanimate sense 1a a brute object

3 : characteristic of an animal in quality, action, or instinct: such as

a : cruel, savage brute violence

b : not working by reason brute instinct

4 : purely physical brute strength brute force

5 : unrelievedly harsh brute facts brute necessity

brute

noun

Definition of brute (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : beast

2 : one who lacks intelligence, sensitivity, or compassion : a brutal person

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Examples of brute in a Sentence

Adjective

They used brute force to open the door. the brute fact of getting old

Noun

Let go of me, you brute! it is a fundamental sense of right and wrong that separates us from the brutes
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The reaction takes brute force—up to 250 atmospheres of pressure in the tall, narrow steel reactors—a process first industrialized by German chemist Carl Bosch. Robert F. Service, Science | AAAS, "Ammonia—a renewable fuel made from sun, air, and water—could power the globe without carbon," 12 July 2018 Johnson's Will Sawyer is tough as nails, using brute force, blunt instruments and plenty of duct tape to rescue his family from a burning building. Katie Walsh, chicagotribune.com, "'Skyscraper' review: Dwayne Johnson shows off his dramatic acting chops," 11 July 2018 The rebels there are now under pressure to surrender as President Assad, backed by Russia and Iran, uses brute force to continue consolidating his grip on the entire country. Dov Lieber, WSJ, "Russia-Backed Syrian Forces Intensify Assault on Rebel Stronghold," 27 June 2018 The tone appears to have calmed somewhat over recent days, which also brought a poll that suggested the CSU's attempt to use political brute force against Merkel may be backfiring in Bavaria. Geir Moulson, Fox News, "Germany's Merkel faces race against time in migrant standoff," 28 June 2018 And like a hacker, a good picker doesn’t break the lock with brute force but with subtlety and finesse. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "Why the Girl Scouts Are Learning to Pick Locks and Hack Computers," 28 June 2018 The tone appears to have calmed somewhat over recent days, which also brought a poll that suggested the CSU’s attempt to use political brute force against Merkel may be backfiring in Bavaria. Washington Post, "Germany’s Merkel faces race against time in migrant standoff," 27 June 2018 The suppression of black voting by law and brute force, especially in the South, was a central part of civil rights battles in the 1950s and ′60s. Richard Sandomir, New York Times, "Dorothy Cotton, Rights Champion and Close Aide to King, Dies at 88," 14 June 2018 But in the decades since the Manhattan Project, the enrichment process has gone from a massive, power-hungry, brute-force operation to a sophisticated and potentially clandestine affair. Umair Irfan, Vox, "Uranium enrichment will be a key point in talks with North Korea. Here’s what it is.," 11 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Both Bolden’s presence and his portrayal are striking, stirring conflicting emotions in the viewer, who is, by turns, forced to consider the black man as beauty, as brute, as prize, and as broken. Maiysha Kai, The Root, "Father Comes Home from the Wars," 9 June 2018 Both iterations depict Thanos as a maniacal, hulking brute. Alex Abad-santos, Vox, "Thanos, the villain of Avengers: Infinity War, explained," 19 Apr. 2018 Not the brainless brutes of our imaginations, Neanderthals apparently used advanced hunting techniques to stalk and kill their prey, a new study suggests. Doyle Rice, USA TODAY, "How to hunt like a Neanderthal: Ancient humans got up close with their prey," 26 June 2018 Not the brainless brutes of our imaginations, Neanderthals apparently used advanced hunting techniques to stalk and kill their prey, a new study suggests. Doyle Rice, ajc, "How to hunt like a Neanderthal," 26 June 2018 In an era of brute-force micro-messaging, partisanship trumps statesmanship, pandering trumps policymaking. Nicholas Carr, chicagotribune.com, "Is Facebook the problem with Facebook, or is it us?," 10 July 2018 After an ugly televised eviction in the late 1990s, when soldiers hauled off families and bulldozers leveled a whole neighborhood, displaying the occupation’s brute force, liberal Israeli judges and foreign diplomats helped slow the expulsions. New York Times, "As Israel Pushes to Build, Bedouin Homes and School Face Demolition," 24 June 2018 The caricature that has emerged of Johnson over the years is something of an unthinking brute, a byproduct of his physical gifts. Brian Costa, WSJ, "Dustin Johnson Opts for Poise Over Power at U.S. Open," 15 June 2018 The notion of the big, animalistic black brute is built into the fabric of American culture. Jean Marbella, baltimoresun.com, "When football teams refuse to play an inner-city powerhouse like St. Frances, is it safety, or bias?," 9 June 2018

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

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1611, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for brute

Adjective

Middle English, from Middle French brut rough, from Latin brutus brutish, literally, heavy; akin to Latin gravis heavy — more at grieve

Noun

see brute entry 1

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Statistics for brute

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Time Traveler for brute

The first known use of brute was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for brute

brute

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of brute

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: very strong or forceful

: very harsh

brute

noun

English Language Learners Definition of brute (Entry 2 of 2)

: a cruel, rough, or violent man

brute

adjective
\ˈbrüt \

Kids Definition of brute

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: typical of beasts : like that of a beast We used brute force to open the door.

brute

noun

Kids Definition of brute (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a four-footed animal especially when wild

2 : a cruel or rough person

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