Breath meaning

brĕth
The definition of breath is the inhalation and exhalation of air into or out of the lungs.

An example of breath is when you take in air.

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A momentary stirring of air.

Not a breath of air stirred the leaves.

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(linguistics) Exhalation of air without vibration of the vocal cords, as in the articulation of p and s.
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A softly spoken sound; a whisper.

There was hardly a breath of protest.

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Air taken into the lungs and then let out.
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The act of breathing; respiration.
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The power to breathe easily and naturally.

To get one's breath back.

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Life or spirit.
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Air or vapor given off from anything.
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Air carrying fragrance or odor.
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A puff or whiff, as of air; slight breeze.
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Moisture produced by a condensing of the breath, as in cold air.
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An utterance, esp. in a low voice; whisper or murmur.
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A slight pause or rest.
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A faint hint or indication.
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(phonet.) A voiceless exhalation of the airstream with relative stillness at the vocal cords, as in pronouncing (s) or (p)
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The act or process of breathing; respiration.
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A single act of breathing.
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The air inhaled and exhaled in respiration.
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The capacity to breathe, especially in a natural and unlabored manner.
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(uncountable) The act or process of breathing.

I could hear the breath of the runner behind me.

The child's breath came quickly and unevenly.

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(countable) A single act of breathing in or out.

I took a deep breath and started the test.

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(uncountable) Air expelled from the lungs.

I could feel the runner's breath on my shoulder.

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(countable) A rest or pause.

Let's stop for a breath when we get to the top of the hill.

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A small amount of something, such as wind, or common sense.

Even with all the windows open, there is hardly a breath of air in here.

If she had a breath of common sense, she would never have spoken to the man in the first place.

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The capacity to breathe, especially in a natural and unlabored manner.

Suffering from shortness of breath.

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Spirit or vitality.

Colors that lend breath to his paintings.

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A momentary pause or rest.

If I could have a breath before I go on.

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in one
  • At or almost at the same time.
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out of breath
  • Breathing with difficulty, as from exertion; gasping.
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under (one's) breath
  • In a muted voice or whisper.
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catch one's breath
  • to gasp
  • to return to normal breathing after exertion
  • to rest or pause
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in the same breath
  • almost simultaneously
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out of breath
  • breathless, as from exertion
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save one's breath
  • to refrain from talking when talk would be useless
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take someone's breath away
  • to strike someone with awe; thrill or dumbfound
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under one's breath
  • in a whisper or murmur
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Origin of breath

  • Middle English breth from Old English brǣth gwhrē- in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Middle English breeth, breth, from Old English brǣþ (“odor, scent, stink, exhalation, vapor”), from Proto-Germanic *brēþiz (“vapour, waft, exhalation, breath”), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰrē-t- (“exhalation from heat; steam”), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰer- (“to seethe, toss about, cook”). Cognate with Scots breth, breith (“breath”), German Brodem (“steam, vapour, fume, odour”). Related also to Icelandic bráður (“hasty, hurried, excited, rash”). More at brath.

    From Wiktionary