- The definition of a brake is a device used to slow down or stop a vehicle or machine.
An example of brake is the device in your car that slows down or stops its movement forward.
- To brake is to slow or stop by pressing on a pedal that cuts off movement.
An example of brake is when you step on the pedal in your car that is next to the gas pedal in order to slow down or stop your car.
This cars brake pedal is the one on the left.Licensed from iStockPhoto
Origin: ME; probably taken as singular of bracken
- a toothed implement for beating or crushing flax or hemp so that the fiber can be separated
- a heavy harrow for breaking up clods of earth
- a handle or lever on a machine: a pump brake
- a machine for turning or bending the edges of sheet metal
- any device for slowing or stopping the motion of a vehicle or machine, as by causing a block, shoe, or band to press against a moving part
- anything that slows down or stops motion or progress
- Obsolete the rack, former instrument of torture
Origin: Middle English ; from Middle Low German brake or Old Dutch braeke, flax brake ; from breken, to break; senses 2-6 variously influenced, influence by Old French brac (form of bras, an arm) and amp; break
- to break up (flax, clods of earth, etc.) into smaller pieces
- to slow down or stop with or as with a brake
- ☆ to operate a brake or brakes
- to be slowed down or stopped by a brake
- brakeless adjective
Origin: ; from or akin to Middle Low German brake, stumps, broken branches, akin to Old English brecan, to break
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
- A device for slowing or stopping motion, as of a vehicle, especially by contact friction.
- Something that slows or stops action.
- To operate or apply a brake.
- To be slowed or stopped by or as if by the operation of a brake.
Origin: Probably brake, bridle, curb, from Middle Dutch or Middle Low German, nose ring, curb, flax brake; see brake2.
top: drum brake system
bottom: disc brake system
- A toothed device for crushing and beating flax or hemp.
- A heavy harrow for breaking clods of earth.
- An apparatus for kneading large amounts of dough.
- A machine for bending and folding sheet metal.
- To crush (flax or hemp) in a toothed device.
- To break up (clods of earth) with a harrow.
Origin: Middle English, from Middle Dutch, from Middle Low German; see bhreg- in Indo-European roots.
Origin: Middle English, from Old French brac, from oblique form of bras, arm; see bracer2.
- Any of various ferns of the genus Pteris having pinnately compound leaves and including several popular houseplants.
- Any of certain other ferns, such as the bracken or the cliff brake.
Origin: Middle English, probably back-formation from braken; see bracken.
Origin: Middle English, from Middle Low German; see bhreg- in Indo-European roots.