redbrick

play
adjective red·brick \-ˌbrik\

Definition of redbrick

  1. 1 :  built of red brick

  2. 2 often capitalized [from the common use of red brick in constructing the buildings of recently founded universities] :  of, relating to, or being the British universities founded in the 19th or early 20th century — compare oxbridge, plateglass

redbrick was our Word of the Day on 04/04/2013. Hear the podcast!

Did You Know?

Although red brick is a perfectly innocent building material in America, the British usage of redbrick is often potentially uncomplimentary. Redbrick is a British coinage created to denote the universities which were newer and perhaps less prestigious than Oxford and Cambridge (and sometimes the ancient universities of Scotland). These newer universities tended to be constructed of red brick, rather than the stone used for Oxford and Cambridge, and were most often created in industrial cities such as Liverpool. Sometimes the term is also used to distinguish these universities from those built after World War II. Limited evidence suggests that redbrick may be developing an extended meaning of "lower-class" or "working class," but this is not yet established enough to merit a dictionary entry.

1769

First Known Use of redbrick

1769


REDBRICK Defined for English Language Learners

redbrick

play
adjective

Definition of redbrick for English Language Learners

  • : made of red bricks

Learn More about redbrick


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up redbrick? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

to glide in or as if in an airplane

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

  • istock-refers-to-this-as-a-tumble-of-strawberries-which-sounded-pretty-nice-to-us
  • Which is a synonym of garner?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!