[brey, bree; Scot. brey, bree]

noun Scot. and North England.

a slope; declivity; hillside.

Origin of brae

1300–50; Middle English bra < Old Norse brā brow, cognate with Old English brēaw eyebrow, eyelid, Old High German brāwa (German Braue); for semantic development, cf. brow Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for braes

Historical Examples of braes

  • He has at least 30,000 sheep on his vast tracks of moorland on the braes of Lochaber.

  • Searching the braes he could hear, after a little, Nan sing at the shealing hut.

  • And all night long deer belled to deer on the braes of Glen Noe.

    John Splendid

    Neil Munro

  • I would as soon be governed by my slaves at the Braes as by such men as they are.

    The Tory Maid

    Herbert Baird Stimpson

  • I will not stop until the Braes is razed to the ground, and I have driven him from the province.

    The Tory Maid

    Herbert Baird Stimpson

British Dictionary definitions for braes


noun Scot

a hill or hillside; slope
(plural) an upland areathe Gleniffer Braes

Word Origin for brae

C14 bra; related to Old Norse brā eyelash, Old High German brāwa eyelid, eyebrow; compare brow
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 braes



"steep slope," in northern England especially "the sides of a hill," early 14c., from Scottish, "slope, river bank," from Old Norse bra "eyelash," cognate with Old English bræw "eyelid," German Braue "eyebrow" (see brow). "The word must have passed through the sense of 'eye-brow' to 'brow of a hill', supercilium (cf. OE. eaghill 'eye-hill'=eyebrow)" [OED].

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper