[ bringk ]
See synonyms for brink on
  1. the edge or margin of a steep place or of land bordering water.

  2. any extreme edge; verge.

  1. a crucial or critical point, especially of a situation or state beyond which success or catastrophe occurs: We were on the brink of war.

Origin of brink

1250–1300; Middle English brink<Old Norse (Danish ) brink, cognate with MLG brink edge, hillside, Old Norse brekka slope, hill

Other words from brink

  • brinkless, adjective

Words Nearby brink Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use brink in a sentence

  • I swung down from my horse on the brink of the creek, cinched the saddle afresh, and rolled a cigarette.

    Raw Gold | Bertrand W. Sinclair
  • It was a hippopotamus which had been standing on the river-brink within six yards of the muzzle of his gun.

    Hunting the Lions | R.M. Ballantyne
  • He sees no longer the brink of the abyss beside which the path of progress picks its painful way.

  • And presently we galloped across a mile or two of level grassland and pulled up on the very brink of Sage Creek canyon.

    Raw Gold | Bertrand W. Sinclair
  • On the opposite side of the stream, set back about thirty paces from the brink, stood a granite boulder.

    Uncanny Tales | Various

British Dictionary definitions for brink


/ (brɪŋk) /

  1. the edge, border, or verge of a steep place: the brink of the precipice

  2. the highest point; top: the sun fell below the brink of the hill

  1. the land at the edge of a body of water

  2. the verge of an event or state: the brink of disaster

Origin of brink

C13: from Middle Dutch brinc, of Germanic origin; compare Old Norse brekka slope, Middle Low German brink edge of a field

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