- the young of the herring and some other fishes
- small sea animals, esp. certain crustaceans, as copepods, eaten by the baleen whales and many fishes
Origin of britCornish from Old Celtic brith, varicolored; akin to Cornish bruit, speckled
- The young of herring and similar fish.
- Minute marine organisms, such as crustaceans of the genus Calanus, that are a major source of food for right whales.
Origin of britPerhaps from Cornish bréthel mackerel ( from Old Cornish breithil ) ( from breith speckled ) or from Welsh brithyll trout ( from brith speckled )
(third-person singular simple present brits, present participle britting, simple past and past participle britted)
From Middle English brytten, brutten, from Old English brittian, bryttian (“to divide, dispense, distribute, rule over, possess, enjoy the use of”), from Proto-Germanic *brutjaną (“to break, divide”), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰreud- (“to break”). Cognate with Icelandic brytja (“to chop up, break in pieces, slaughter”), Swedish bryta (“to break, fracture, cut off”), Danish bryde (“to break”) and Albanian brydh (“I make crumbly, friable, soft”). Related to Old English brytta (“dispenser, giver, author, governor, prince”), Old English brēotan (“to break in pieces, hew down, demolish, destroy, kill”).
- brit milah
Short for brit milah.
- (informal, formerly offensive) A British person.
Shortened from British.