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[brest-pleyt] /ˈbrɛstˌpleɪt/
a piece of plate armor partially or completely covering the front of the torso: used by itself or as part of a cuirass.
the part of the harness that runs across the chest of a saddle horse.
  1. a square, richly embroidered vestment ornamented with 12 precious stones, each inscribed with the name of one of the 12 tribes of Israel, secured to the ephod of the high priest and worn on the chest. Ex. 28:15–28.
  2. a rectangular ornament, typically of silver, suspended by a chain over the front of a scroll of the Torah.
a plate opposite the chuck end of a breast drill against which the operator's chest is placed.
Origin of breastplate
First recorded in 1350-1400, breastplate is from the Middle English word brestplate. See breast, plate1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for breastplate
Historical Examples
  • I, who wear no armor, will go as far as any one with breastplate of mail.

  • His sword-sheath, breastplate, and trappings were clear and bright.

    Micah Clarke Arthur Conan Doyle
  • These wraps seem glued to her—they form quite a breastplate.'

    His Masterpiece Emile Zola
  • Was your name in the Bible—the sixth stone in the high priest's breastplate.

  • It glanced from the breastplate; but Hassan Subah staggered in his seat.

    Alroy Benjamin Disraeli
  • Upon the head was a helmet and across the breast was a breastplate.

    The Children of Odin Padraic Colum
  • He cut the fastenings of the breastplate with his sword, and he gazed long upon her.

    The Children of Odin Padraic Colum
  • The breastplate of righteousness is our defence against evil.

    Expositions of Holy Scripture

    Alexander Maclaren
  • The son of Priam hit the breastplate of Menelaus's corslet, but the arrow glanced from off it.

    The Iliad Homer
  • He bade his comrade Automedon bring the breastplate from his tent, and he did so.

    The Iliad Homer
British Dictionary definitions for breastplate


a piece of armour covering the chest
the strap of a harness covering a horse's breast
(Judaism) an ornamental silver plate hung on the scrolls of the Torah
(Old Testament) a square vestment ornamented with 12 precious stones, representing the 12 tribes of Israel, worn by the high priest when praying before the holy of holies
(zoology) a nontechnical name for plastron
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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