bracket

[brak-it]

noun

verb (used with object)


Origin of bracket

1570–80; earlier also brag(g)et (in architecture); of obscure origin
Related formsun·brack·et·ed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for brackets


British Dictionary definitions for brackets

bracket

noun

an L-shaped or other support fixed to a wall to hold a shelf, etc
one or more wall shelves carried on brackets
architect a support projecting from the side of a wall or other structureSee also corbel, ancon, console 2
Also called: square bracket either of a pair of characters, [ ], used to enclose a section of writing or printing to separate it from the main text
a group or category falling within or between certain defined limitsthe lower income bracket
the distance between two preliminary shots of artillery fire in range-finding
a skating figure consisting of two arcs meeting at a point, tracing the shape ⋎

verb -kets, -keting or -keted (tr)

to fix or support by means of a bracket or brackets
to put (written or printed matter) in brackets, esp as being irrelevant, spurious, or bearing a separate relationship of some kind to the rest of the text
to couple or join (two lines of text, etc) with a brace
(often foll by with) to group or class togetherto bracket Marx with the philosophers
to adjust (artillery fire) until the target is hit

Word Origin for bracket

C16: from Old French braguette codpiece, diminutive of bragues breeches, from Old Provençal braga, from Latin brāca breeches
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

Word Origin and History for brackets

bracket

n.

1570s, bragget, "architectural support," probably from Middle French braguette "codpiece armor" (16c.), from a fancied resemblance of architectural supports to that article of attire (Spanish cognate bragueta meant both "codpiece" and "bracket"), diminutive of brague "knee pants," ultimately from Gaulish *braca "pants," itself perhaps from Germanic (cf. Old English broc "garment for the legs and trunk;" see breeches). The sense might reflect the "breeches" sense, on the notion of two limbs or of appliances used in pairs. The typographical bracket is first recorded 1750, so called for its resemblance to double supports in carpentry (a sense attested from 1610s). Senses affected by Latin brachium "arm."

bracket

v.

1797, of printed matter, "to enclose in brackets," from bracket (n.). Also, "to couple or connect with a brace" (1827), also figurative, "to couple one thing with another" in writing (1807). Artillery rangefinding sense is from 1903, from the noun (1891) in the specialized sense "distance between the ranges of two shells, one under and one over the object." Related: Bracketed; bracketing. In home-building and joinery, bracketed is attested by 1801.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Culture definitions for brackets

brackets

Marks — [ ] — resembling parentheses with square corners. Brackets are often used within quotations to distinguish between the quoter's own words and those of the writer being quoted: “He [the president] made a memorable speech at Gettysburg.”

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.