1 : stomach
2 : a major cereal-producing region
Did You Know?
"Breadbasket" has been used as slang in English since at least the mid-1700s. (It has been used even longer to mean literally a basket for holding bread.) It can refer to the stomach as an actual digestive organ ("his breadbasket rumbled with hunger"), but these days it's more commonly applied to the general stomach area ("rested her hands on her breadbasket"). No one is quite sure of the exact origins of the use, but it’s likely that there’s some connection between the basket used to hold bread and the "basket" where the bread ends up after a person eats it. "Breadbasket" has also come to refer to an area that supplies an important amount of grain ("the breadbasket of the country").
We were playing dodgeball, and the ball hit me right in the breadbasket.
"The Turks have completed their network of twenty-two dams, nineteen hydroelectric plants and a vast array of irrigation works to transform Anatolia into a breadbasket." -- From Susan George's 2010 book Whose Crisis, Whose Future?
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