verb (used with object)
- to walk the streets, especially as an unemployed or homeless person.
- to go on strike: With contract talks stalled, workers are threatening to hit the bricks.
- to plan or act on a false premise or unrealistic basis.
- to create something that will not last: To form governments without the consent of the people is to make bricks without straw.
- to perform a task despite the lack of necessary materials.
Origin of brick
Examples from the Web for brick
Contemporary Examples of brick
It was a brick wall that we turned into the on-ramp of a highway.Coffee Talk with Fred Armisen: On ‘Portlandia,’ Meeting Obama, and Taylor Swift’s Greatness
January 7, 2015
Once a cadet dropped a brick from a third-story barracks window that barely missed Jackson.Stonewall Jackson, VMI’s Most Embattled Professor
S. C. Gwynne
November 29, 2014
Brooklyn is brick walls, little shops and industrial decoration.How Brooklyn Invaded Paris—Next Stop, the World
October 23, 2014
And in Italy, the 16th-century body of an old woman was dug up in 2006 with a brick in her mouth.Bulgaria’s Vampire Graveyards
October 15, 2014
They use autoclaves, which work like pressure cookers, instead of brick ovens.Grab A Shot Glass: Craft Tequila Needs Your Help
September 7, 2014
Historical Examples of brick
In the beginning, a star, when drawn with a nail into a brick looked as follows.
What others had done in brick he could do with the help of more costly materials.
You do like I tells yer, or yer'll git yer eggercation wid a brick.A Night Out
I was right by his very side at the time, and see him see the brick and see him reconnize it.Tom Sawyer Abroad
Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)
They are exceedingly fine and cost one hundred dollars a brick.The Devil's Dictionary
- a rectangular block of clay mixed with sand and fired in a kiln or baked by the sun, used in building construction
- (as modifier)a brick house
Word Origin for brick
early 15c., from Old French briche "brick," probably from a Germanic source akin to Middle Dutch bricke "a tile," literally "a broken piece," from the verbal root of break (v.). Meaning "a good, honest fellow" is from 1840, probably on notion of squareness (e.g. fair and square) though most extended senses of brick (and square) applied to persons in English are not meant to be complimentary. Brick wall in the figurative sense of "impenetrable barrier" is from 1886.
"to wall up with bricks," 1640s, from brick (n.). Related: Bricked; bricking.
In addition to the idioms beginning with brick
- bricks and mortar
- bricks shy of a load
- drop a brick
- hit the bricks
- like a cat on a hot brick
- like a ton of bricks
- make bricks without straw
- run into a stone (brick) wall