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[broo-der] /ˈbru dər/
a device or structure for the rearing of young chickens or other birds.
a person or animal that broods.
Origin of brooder
1590-1600; brood + -er1


[brood] /brud/
a number of young produced or hatched at one time; a family of offspring or young.
a breed, species, group, or kind:
The museum exhibited a brood of monumental sculptures.
verb (used with object)
to sit upon (eggs) to hatch, as a bird; incubate.
(of a bird) to warm, protect, or cover (young) with the wings or body.
to think or worry persistently or moodily about; ponder:
He brooded the problem.
verb (used without object)
to sit upon eggs to be hatched, as a bird.
to dwell on a subject or to meditate with morbid persistence (usually followed by over or on).
kept for breeding:
a brood hen.
Verb phrases
brood above/over, to cover, loom, or seem to fill the atmosphere or scene:
The haunted house on the hill brooded above the village.
before 1000; Middle English; Old English brōd; cognate with Dutch broed, German Brut. See breed
Related forms
broodless, adjective
unbrooded, adjective
Can be confused
brewed, brood (see synonym study at the current entry)
1. Brood, litter refer to young creatures. Brood is especially applied to the young of fowls and birds hatched from eggs at one time and raised under their mother's care: a brood of young turkeys. Litter is applied to a group of young animals brought forth at a birth: a litter of kittens or pups. 2. line, stock, strain. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for brooder
Historical Examples
  • This can be accomplished by having the warmest part of the brooder in the center rather than at the side or corner.

    The Dollar Hen Milo M. Hastings
  • I can get a first-rate one for forty dollars, and I can buy one 'brooder.'

  • We are all alike and yet all different; each of us is a wanderer, a brooder, a seeker.

    The New Society Walther Rathenau
  • For convenience this house will be spoken of as brooder house No. 1.

    Ducks and Geese Harry M. Lamon
  • The brooder is employed to take care of the chickens as soon as they leave the incubator.

    Agriculture for Beginners Charles William Burkett
  • It may be due to improper feeding, or to too high or low temperature in the brooder.

    Ducks and Geese Harry M. Lamon
  • But woman as a human incubator and brooder is an 170 obsolete machine.

    The Crimson Tide Robert W. Chambers
  • Next to the walk, and parallel with it, the brooder box should run.

  • In a very few days after we place the chicks in a brooder they should be allowed to go in and out at will.

    Outdoor Sports and Games Claude H. Miller
  • The chief expense of investment is for incubators and brooder houses.

    The Dollar Hen Milo M. Hastings
British Dictionary definitions for brooder


an enclosure or other structure, usually heated, used for rearing young chickens or other fowl
a person or thing that broods


a number of young animals, esp birds, produced at one hatching
all the offspring in one family: often used jokingly or contemptuously
a group of a particular kind; breed
(as modifier) kept for breeding: a brood mare
(of a bird)
  1. to sit on or hatch (eggs)
  2. (transitive) to cover (young birds) protectively with the wings
when intr, often foll by on, over or upon. to ponder morbidly or persistently
Derived Forms
brooding, noun, adjective
broodingly, adverb
Word Origin
Old English brōd; related to Middle High German bruot, Dutch broed; see breed
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 brooder



Old English brod "brood, fetus, hatchling," from Proto-Germanic *brod (cf. Middle Dutch broet, Old High German bruot, German Brut "brood"), literally "that which is hatched by heat," from *bro- "to warm, heat," from PIE *bhre- "burn, heat, incubate," from root *bhreue- "to boil, bubble, effervesce, burn" (see brew (v.)).


"sit on eggs, hatch," mid-15c., from brood (n.). The figurative meaning ("to incubate in the mind") is first recorded 1570s, from notion of "nursing" one's anger, resentment, etc. Related: Brooded; brooding.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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brooder in Medicine

brood (brōōd)
See litter.

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