• synonyms


  1. a piece of plate armor partially or completely covering the front of the torso: used by itself or as part of a cuirass.
  2. the part of the harness that runs across the chest of a saddle horse.
  3. Judaism.
    1. a square, richly embroidered vestment ornamented with 12 precious stones, each inscribed with the name of one of the 12 tribes of Israel, secured to the ephod of the high priest and worn on the chest. Ex. 28:15–28.
    2. a rectangular ornament, typically of silver, suspended by a chain over the front of a scroll of the Torah.
  4. a plate opposite the chuck end of a breast drill against which the operator's chest is placed.
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Origin of breastplate

First recorded in 1350–1400, breastplate is from the Middle English word brestplate. See breast, plate1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for breastplate

Historical Examples of breastplate

  • I, who wear no armor, will go as far as any one with breastplate of mail.

    Cameos from English History, from Rollo to Edward II

    Charlotte Mary Yonge

  • His sword-sheath, breastplate, and trappings were clear and bright.

    Micah Clarke

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • These wraps seem glued to her—they form quite a breastplate.'

    His Masterpiece

    Emile Zola

  • Was your name in the Bible—the sixth stone in the high priest's breastplate.

  • It glanced from the breastplate; but Hassan Subah staggered in his seat.


    Benjamin Disraeli

British Dictionary definitions for breastplate


  1. a piece of armour covering the chest
  2. the strap of a harness covering a horse's breast
  3. Judaism an ornamental silver plate hung on the scrolls of the Torah
  4. Old Testament a square vestment ornamented with 12 precious stones, representing the 12 tribes of Israel, worn by the high priest when praying before the holy of holies
  5. zoology a nontechnical name for plastron
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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