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90s Slang You Should Know


[noun breech; verb breech, brich] /noun britʃ; verb britʃ, brɪtʃ/
the lower, rear part of the trunk of the body; buttocks.
the hinder or lower part of anything.
Ordnance. the rear part of the bore of a gun, especially the opening and associated mechanism that permits insertion of a projectile.
Machinery. the end of a block or pulley farthest from the supporting hook or eye.
Nautical. the outside angle of a knee in the frame of a ship.
verb (used with object)
Ordnance. to fit or furnish (a gun) with a breech.
to clothe with breeches.
Origin of breech
before 1000; Middle English breeche, Old English brēc, plural of brōc; cognate with Old Norse brōk, Old High German bruoh
Related forms
unbreeched, adjective
Can be confused
breach, breech (see synonym study at breach) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for breech
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • A safety device prevents any shots from being fired until after the breech is closed.

  • Then he was represented by a youth who wore a breech cloth only.

    Folkways William Graham Sumner
  • But the man spake not; he reclined motionless over the breech of the field piece.

  • He bore two riders, naked to the sun, save for breech clouts.

    Desert Dust Edwin L. Sabin
  • They were loaded by movable chambers which fitted into the breech, and they were known as "crakys of war."

    On the Spanish Main John Masefield
  • In Marshall's opinion the breech between these kinsfolk ought not to be healed.

    Reels and Spindles Evelyn Raymond
  • The breech face marks, as well as the individual imperfections in the firing pin.

    Warren Commission (3 of 26): Hearings Vol. III (of 15) The President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy
  • It is charged by a separate chamber, dropped into the breech and keyed.

    The Sailor's Word-Book William Henry Smyth
  • Now, to screw this in and out of the breech of the gun would be a matter taking an appreciable time.

    The British Navy Book Cyril Field
British Dictionary definitions for breech


noun (briːtʃ)
the lower dorsal part of the human trunk; buttocks; rump
the lower part or bottom of something: the breech of the bridge
the lower portion of a pulley block, esp the part to which the rope or chain is secured
the part of a firearm behind the barrel or bore
(obstetrics) short for breech delivery
verb (transitive) (briːtʃ; brɪtʃ)
to fit (a gun) with a breech
(archaic) to clothe in breeches or any other clothing
See also breeches
Usage note
Breech is sometimes wrongly used as a verb where breach is meant: the barrier/agreement was breached (not breeched)
Word Origin
Old English brēc, plural of brōc leg covering; related to Old Norse brōk, Old High German bruoh
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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Word Origin and History for breech

"back part of a gun or firearm," 1570s, from singular of breeches (q.v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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breech in Medicine

breech (brēch)
The lower rear portion of the human trunk; the buttocks.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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