- the act of a person or other animal that breathes; respiration.
- a single breath.
- the short time required for a single breath.
- a pause, as for breath.
- utterance or words.
- a gentle moving or blowing, as of wind.
- Classical Greek Grammar.
Origin of breathing
- to take air, oxygen, etc., into the lungs and expel it; inhale and exhale; respire.
- (in speech) to control the outgoing breath in producing voice and speech sounds.
- to pause, as for breath; take rest: How about giving me a chance to breathe?
- to move gently or blow lightly, as air.
- to live; exist: Hardly a man breathes who has not known great sorrow.
- to be redolent of.
- (of a material) to allow air and moisture to pass through easily: The jacket is comfortable because the fabric breathes.
- (of the skin) to absorb oxygen and give off perspiration.
- (of a wine) to be exposed to air after being uncorked, in order to develop flavor and bouquet.
- to inhale and exhale in respiration.
- to exhale: Dragons breathe fire.
- to inject as if by breathing; infuse: She breathed life into the party.
- to give utterance to; whisper.
- to express; manifest.
- to allow to rest or recover breath: to breathe a horse.
- to deprive of breath; tire; exhaust.
- to cause to pant; exercise.
- breathe down someone's neck,
- to be close to someone in pursuit; menace; threaten: Police from four states were breathing down his neck.
- to watch someone closely so as to supervise or control: If everyone keeps breathing down my neck, how can I get my work done?
- breathe freely, to have relief from anxiety, tension, or pressure: Now that the crisis was over, he could breathe freely.Also breathe easily, breathe easy.
- breathe one's last, to die: He breathed his last and was buried in the churchyard.
- not breathe a word/syllable, to maintain secrecy; keep a matter confidential: I'll tell you if you promise not to breathe a word.
Origin of breathe
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for breathing
He said, ‘They’re both shot in the head and neither of them are breathing.'Please Don't Die!': The Frantic Battle to Save Murdered Cops
December 22, 2014
So many eighteen-year-old girls,” says Oliona, “breathing down my neck.Russia’s Gold Digger Academy
November 11, 2014
However, in calm, deep wave sleep, breathing and pulse is slow and regular, and movements are more than rare, he says.
Take, for instance, those with sleep apnea, in which breathing periodically stops and starts throughout the night.
For instance, in active REM sleep, breathing and pulse may be irregular, and small muscular twitches are common.
It is only the true lover to whom the breathing form is as sacred as the breathless.Malbone
Thomas Wentworth Higginson
At length her head came up a little and her breathing was easier and easier.Way of the Lawless
A man is but a beast as he lives from day to day, eating and drinking, breathing and sleeping.The White Company
Arthur Conan Doyle
Wilson was breathing quietly: his color was coming up, as he rallied from the shock.K
Mary Roberts Rinehart
For a long time he did not move, but I could see he was breathing.
- the passage of air into and out of the lungs to supply the body with oxygen
- a single breatha breathing between words
- an utterancea breathing of hate
- a soft movement, esp of air
- a rest or pause
- expulsion of breath (rough breathing) or absence of such expulsion (smooth breathing) preceding the pronunciation of an initial vowel or rho in ancient Greek
- either of two symbols indicating this
- to take in oxygen from (the surrounding medium, esp air) and give out carbon dioxide; respire
- (intr) to exist; be aliveevery animal that breathes on earth
- (intr) to rest to regain breath, composure, etcstop your questions, and give me a chance to breathe
- (intr) (esp of air) to blow lightlythe wind breathed through the trees
- (intr) machinery
- to take in air, esp for combustionthe engine breathes through this air filter
- to equalize the pressure within a container, chamber, etc, with atmospheric pressurethe crankcase breathes through this duct
- (tr) phonetics to articulate (a speech sound) without vibration of the vocal cordsCompare voice (def. 19)
- to exhale or emitthe dragon breathed fire
- (tr) to impart; instilto breathe confidence into the actors
- (tr) to speak softly; whisperto breathe words of love
- (tr) to permit to restto breathe a horse
- (intr) (of a material) to allow air to pass through so that perspiration can evaporate
- breathe again, breathe freely or breathe easily to feel reliefI could breathe again after passing the exam
- breathe down someone's neck to stay close to someone, esp to oversee what they are doingthe cops are breathing down my neck
- breathe one's last to die or be finished or defeated
Word Origin and History for breathing
c.1300, not in Old English, but it retains the original Old English vowel of its source word, breath. Related: Breathed; breathing.
- The alternate inhalation and exhalation of air in respiration.