brethren[bret̸h′rən; often, -ərn]
- The definition of brethren are members of a group, especially a male religious order.
A group of Christian men who are all part of the same religious order are an example of brethren.
Brethren praying together.
brothers: now chiefly in religious use
Origin of brethrenMiddle English bretheren, plural : see brother
- A plural of brother.
- Brethren Any of various Protestant denominations, especially those arising out of the Anabaptist and Pietist movements in Central Europe between the 15th and 18th centuries.
- of or pertaining to any religious group that uses or formerly used the word "Brethren", capitalized, in referring to itself or its members
- (in the plural, informal) any Brethren denomination (usually preceded by "the" or "The")
- (in the singular), a member of a Brethren congregation or denomination
Variant of brother
nounpl. brothers, brethren
- a man or boy as he is related to the other children of his parents: sometimes also used of animals
- a man or boy related to one by having a parent in common; half brother
- a stepbrother
- a foster brother
- a close male friend who is like a brother
- a fellow human being
- a male fellow member of the same race, church, profession, organization, etc.: fraternity brother, soul brother
- a lay member of a men's religious order
- Informal any man: often used as a familiar term of address
Origin of brotherMiddle English ; from Old English brothor ; from Indo-European base an unverified form bhrāter from source Gothic brothar, Classical Latin frater, Old Irish brāthir, Sanskrit bhrātar, Classical Greek phratēr
Slang used to provide emphasis, often at the beginning of one's remarks