Also, breathe easily or freely. Relax, feel relieved from anxiety, stress, or tension. For example, Now that exams are over with, I can breathe easy, or Whenever I'm back in the mountains, I can breathe freely again. This idiom originally (late 1500s) was put as breathe again, implying that one had stopped breathing (or held one's breath) while feeling anxious or nervous. Shakespeare had it in King John (4:2): “Now I breathe again aloft the flood.” The variant dates from the first half of the 1800s.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
How to use breathe easy in a sentence
I bet the poor nut wot owns this place can't breathe easy for bein' scared things'll be took or burnt up.More Portmanteau Plays | Stuart Walker
But till word come thet old Burrell Thornton war dead an' buried, folks didn't skeercely breathe easy nohow.The Roof Tree | Charles Neville Buck
Upon being advised to change his position in bed, that he might breathe easy, he said, "A dying man can do nothing easy."Benjamin Franklin; Self-Revealed, Volume I (of 2) | Wiliam Cabell Bruce
I will not breathe easy till we are out of this cursed valley.Ramona | Helen Hunt Jackson