Brief definition

brēf
A short, succinct statement.
noun
23
7
Of short duration or extent.
adjective
9
3
Succinct; concise.

A brief account of the incident.

adjective
15
10
Short in time, duration, length, or extent.
adjective
9
6
(law) A writ summoning one to answer to any action.
noun
3
0
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To give instructions or preparatory information to.

Briefed the astronauts before the mission.

verb
13
11
Of short duration; happening quickly. [from 15th c.]

Her reign was brief but spectacular.

adjective
2
1
Occupying a small distance, area or spatial extent; short. [from 17th c.]

Her skirt was extremely brief but doubtless cool.

adjective
2
1
(law) An answer to any action.
noun
1
0
To summarize a recent development to some person with decision-making power.

The U.S. president was briefed on the military coup and its implications on African stability.

verb
1
0
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(law) To write a legal argument and submit it to a court.
verb
1
0
(obsolete, poetic) Briefly.
adverb
1
0
Short in length.
adjective
4
4
Short, tight-fitting underpants.
noun
3
3
Using relatively few words; concise.
adjective
3
3
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Concise; taking few words. [from 15th c.]

His speech of acceptance was brief but moving.

adjective
1
1
Curt; abrupt.

We were upset because he was so brief with us.

adjective
3
4
To summarize.
verb
3
4
A brief is defined as a short written or spoken statement or a statement of the main points of a legal case.

An example of brief is a five minute news segment covering a short announcement by the president.

An example of brief is a paper that explains why a person is guilty of a crime.

noun
1
2
(roman catholic church) A papal letter that is not as formal as a bull.
noun
1
2
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A briefing.
noun
1
2
(chiefly british) The instructions that are given to explain a task or assignment.
noun
1
2
Curt or abrupt.
adjective
1
2
A summary or abstract.
noun
1
2
A concise statement of the main points of a law case, usually filed by counsel for the information of the court.
noun
1
2
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(chiefly brit.) A set of instructions for the participants in some project, investigation, etc., indicating the scope of their responsibilities.
noun
1
2
To make a summary of.
verb
1
2
An early text editor for DOS programming from Borland. It provided automatic indentation and the ability to edit different parts of a source program at the same time.
1
2
(UK, historical) A letter patent, from proper authority, authorizing a collection or charitable contribution of money in churches, for any public or private purpose.
noun
1
2
The definition of brief is short in length or lasting for only a short time.

An example of brief is a one page paper.

adjective
0
1
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(r.c.ch.) A papal letter less formal than a bull.
noun
0
1
Closefitting, legless undershorts.
noun
0
1
Women's panties that cover the body from the waist to the leg.
noun
0
1
To supply with all the pertinent instructions or information.

To brief pilots before a flight.

verb
0
1
To furnish with a legal brief.
verb
0
1
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To hire as counsel.
verb
0
1
A written statement prepared by a lawyer and submitted to the court that outlines the pertinent facts of the case, the questions of law to be decided, the position of the lawyer’s client as to those questions, and the legal arguments and authorities (for example, statutes and appellate court decisions) that support that position. See also memorandum.
noun
0
1
The brief submitted by an amicus curiae. Also called brief amicus curiae.
0
1
A brief submitted when the case is on appeal.
0
1
A brief that responds to the arguments previously raised in an opponent’s brief.
0
1
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A brief usually submitted just before a trial.
0
1
(law) A memorandum of points of fact or of law for use in conducting a case.
noun
0
1
(law) An attorney's legal argument in written form for submission to a court.
noun
0
1
(English law) The material relevant to a case, delivered by a solicitor to the barrister who tries the case.
noun
0
1
(informal) A short news story or report.
noun
0
1
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Overbury.

Each woman is a brief of womankind.

noun
0
1
(obsolete, poetic) Soon; quickly.

adverb
0
1
(law) A document concisely stating the legal points being made, including often the citation and explanation of supporting legal authority.
noun
2
4
A condensation or an abstract of a larger document or series of documents.
noun
0
2
in brief
  • In short.
idiom
0
0
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hold a brief for
  • to argue for or be in favor of
idiom
0
0
in brief
  • in short; in a few words
idiom
0
0

Other Word Forms

Noun

Singular:
brief
Plural:
briefs

Adjective

Base Form:
brief
Comparative:
briefer
Superlative:
briefest

Idioms and Phrasal Verbs

hold a brief for

Origin of brief

  • Middle English bref from Old French from Latin brevis N., Middle English bref written communication from Old French from Medieval Latin breve from Latin neuter of brevis short mregh-u- in Indo-European roots

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

  • From Old French brief, from Latin brevis (“short”). Compare French bref.

    From Wiktionary