breath

noun

1
a
: air filled with a fragrance or odor
b
: a slight indication : suggestion
the faintest breath of scandal
2
a
: the faculty of breathing
recovering his breath after the race
b
: an act of breathing
fought to the last breath
c
: opportunity or time to breathe : respite
3
: a slight breeze
4
a
: air inhaled and exhaled in breathing
bad breath
b
: something (such as moisture on a cold surface) produced by breath or breathing
5
: a spoken sound : utterance
6
Phrases
breath of fresh air
: a welcome or refreshing change
in one breath or in the same breath
: almost simultaneously
out of breath
: breathing very rapidly (as from strenuous exercise)
under one's breath
: so as to be barely audible
mumbled something under his breath

Examples of breath in a Sentence

When Oscar Wilde allegedly gestured at the garish wallpaper in his cheap Parisian hotel room and announced with his dying breath, "Either it goes or I go," he was exhibiting something beyond an irrepressibly brilliant wit. Tom Robbins, Harper's, September 2004
I ski as far as I can and stop (in these relatively low-altitude coastal mountains, you don't stop for breath the way you sometimes do in Colorado; here you stop when your legs demand a break) … Lito Tejada-Flores, Skiing, February 1999
gum that freshens your breath It's so cold outside that I can see my breath. My mad dash for the bus left me gasping for breath. I took a long breath before speaking again.
Recent Examples on the Web Hold for five breaths before releasing the position. Marie Bladt, Vogue, 9 July 2024 Continue to take big, deep breaths in through the nose while restricting the throat, resulting in an oceanic-sounding breath. Finnian Kelly, TIME, 8 July 2024 The only thing that can get me from here to there is my breath. Cory Richards, Outside Online, 7 July 2024 Responding officers smelled alcohol on the driver’s breath and took him into custody, but police were still in the process of testing him late Thursday night. Elizabeth Keogh, New York Daily News, 5 July 2024 See all Example Sentences for breath 

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

Word History

Etymology

Middle English breth, from Old English brǣth; akin to Old High German brādam breath, and perhaps to Old English beorma yeast — more at barm

First Known Use

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

Time Traveler
The first known use of breath was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near breath

Cite this Entry

“Breath.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/breath. Accessed 24 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

breath

noun
1
a
: air filled with a fragrance or odor
b
: a slight indication : suggestion
a faint breath of scandal
2
a
: the ability to breathe
b
: an act of breathing
3
: a slight breeze
4
a
: air inhaled and exhaled in breathing
b
: something (as moisture on a cold surface) produced by breathing
5
: a spoken sound

Medical Definition

breath

noun
1
a
: the faculty of breathing
recovering her breath after the race
b
: an act or an instance of breathing or inhaling
2
a
: air inhaled and exhaled in breathing
bad breath
b
: something (as moisture on a cold surface) produced by breath or breathing

More from Merriam-Webster on breath

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