[ breech ]
/ britʃ /


verb (used with object)

to make a breach or opening in.
to break or act contrary to (a law, promise, etc.).

verb (used without object)

(of a whale) to leap partly or completely out of the water, head first, and land on the back or belly with a resounding splash.

Nearby words

  1. brca,
  2. brca1,
  3. brcs,
  4. bre,
  5. brea,
  6. breach of contract,
  7. breach of faith,
  8. breach of promise,
  9. breach of the peace,
  10. breach of trust

Origin of breach

before 1000; Middle English breche, Old English bræc breaking; see break

Related formsbreach·er, nounnon·breach, nounnon·breach·ing, adjectiveun·breached, adjective

Can be confusedbreach breech

Synonym study

2. Breach, infraction, violation, transgression all denote in some way the breaking of a rule or law or the upsetting of a normal and desired state. Breach is used infrequently in reference to laws or rules, more often in connection with desirable conditions or states of affairs: a breach of the peace, of good manners, of courtesy. Infraction most often refers to clearly formulated rules or laws: an infraction of the criminal code, of university regulations, of a labor contract. Violation, a stronger term than either of the preceding two, often suggests intentional, even forceful or aggressive, refusal to obey the law or to respect the rights of others: repeated violations of parking regulations; a human rights violation. Transgression, with its root sense of “a stepping across (of a boundary of some sort),” applies to any behavior that exceeds the limits imposed by a law, especially a moral law, a commandment, or an order; it often implies sinful behavior: a serious transgression of social customs, of God's commandments. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for breach

British Dictionary definitions for breach


/ (briːtʃ) /



Word Origin for breach

Old English bræc; influenced by Old French brèche, from Old High German brecha, from brechan to break

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 breach
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper