- a kind of food made of flour or meal that has been mixed with milk or water, made into a dough or batter, with or without yeast or other leavening agent, and baked.
- food or sustenance; livelihood: to earn one's bread.
- Slang. money.
- Ecclesiastical. the wafer or bread used in a Eucharistic service.
- Cookery. to cover with breadcrumbs or meal.
- break bread,
- to eat a meal, especially in companionable association with others.
- to distribute or participate in Communion.
- cast one's bread upon the waters, to act generously or charitably with no thought of personal gain.
- know which side one's bread is buttered on, to be aware of those things that are to one's own advantage.
- take the bread out of someone's mouth, to deprive someone of livelihood.
Origin of bread
Examples from the Web for bread
For example, Kuwait recently put a limit the allowable amount of sodium in bread to lower blood pressure.The Secret to Tracking Ebola, MERS, and Flu? Sewers
November 29, 2014
Place one sheet of phyllo on the board, brush it with butter, and sprinkle it with ¾ teaspoon of bread crumbs.The Barefoot Contessa’s Tasty Trip to Paris
November 27, 2014
The last time Xido was at the orphanage in 2012, money was running out and there was only bread to eat for a few days.Death Metal Angola: Heavy Metal in War-Torn Africa
November 21, 2014
Venezuela faces shortages in everything from toilet paper to bread, but one of the most overlooked items is breast implants.Venezuela Now Has Toilet Paper but No Breast Implants
September 16, 2014
A bad day for Mark Francis would involve having to take public transport and having the crusts left on his bread.‘Made in Chelsea’ Has a New York Moment
August 19, 2014
But honesty don't get you bread or bacon, not in this world!Way of the Lawless
And so to-night I am going to spend them, not prudently on bread, but prodigally on beer.Ballads of a Bohemian
Robert W. Service
She tried to talk to Mr. Brailsford when he handed her the tea and bread and butter.Life and Death of Harriett Frean
You know you have but cast your bread upon the waters—so no more of that!Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)
The Son of God forgive us, Nora, we're after forgetting his bit of bread.Riders to the Sea
J. M. Synge
- a food made from a dough of flour or meal mixed with water or milk, usually raised with yeast or baking powder and then baked
- necessary food; nourishmentgive us our daily bread
- a slang word for money
- Christianity a small loaf, piece of bread, or wafer of unleavened bread used in the Eucharist
- bread and circuses something offered as a means of distracting attention from a problem or grievance
- break bread See break (def. 46)
- cast one's bread upon the waters to do good without expectation of advantage or return
- to know which side one's bread is buttered to know what to do in order to keep one's advantages
- take the bread out of someone's mouth to deprive someone of a livelihood
- (tr) to cover with breadcrumbs before cookingbreaded veal
Word Origin and History for bread
Old English bread "bit, crumb, morsel; bread," cognate with Old Norse brauð, Danish brød, Old Frisian brad, Middle Dutch brot, Dutch brood, German Brot. According to one theory [Watkins, etc.] from Proto-Germanic *brautham, which would be from the root of brew (v.) and refer to the leavening.
But OED argues at some length for the basic sense being not "cooked food" but "piece of food," and the Old English word deriving from a Proto-Germanic *braudsmon- "fragments, bits" (cf. Old High German brosma "crumb," Old English breotan "to break in pieces") and being related to the root of break (v.). It cites Slovenian kruh "bread," literally "a piece."
Either way, by c.1200 it had replaced the usual Old English word for "bread," which was hlaf (see loaf (n.)). Slang meaning "money" dates from 1940s, but cf. breadwinner. Bread-and-butter in the figurative sense of "basic needs" is from 1732. Bread and circuses (1914) is from Latin, in reference to food and entertainment provided by governments to keep the populace happy. "Duas tantum res anxius optat, Panem et circenses" [Juvenal, Sat. x.80].
"to dress with bread crumbs," 1727, from bread (n.). Related: Breaded; breading.
Idioms and Phrases with bread
In addition to the idioms beginning with bread
- bread and butter
- break bread
- greatest thing since sliced bread
- know which side of bread is buttered
- take the bread out of someone's mouth