Words related to breast

abreast (adv.)

mid-15c., a contraction of on brest "side-by-side," from a- (1) + breast (n.); the notion is of "with breasts in line." To keep abreast in figurative sense of "stay up-to-date" is from 1650s.

breastbone (n.)

"sternum," Old English breostban; see breast (n.) + bone (n.).

breast-stroke (n.)

method of swimming, 1867, from breast (n.) + stroke (n.). Related: Breast-stroker.

breastwork (n.)

"fieldwork thrown up breast-high for defense," 1640s, from breast (n.) + work (n.) in "fortification" sense. Old English had breostweall in same sense.

brisket (n.)

"breast or rib-meat of an animal," mid-14c., brusket, perhaps from Old French bruschet, with identical sense of the English word, or from Old Norse brjosk "gristle, cartilage" (related to brjost "breast") or Danish bryske or Middle High German brusche "lump, swelling;" from PIE *bhreus- "to swell, sprout" (see breast (n.)).

browse (v.)

mid-15c., brousen, "feed on buds, eat leaves or twigs from" trees or bushes, from Old French broster "to sprout, bud," from brost "young shoot, twig, green food fit for cattle or deer," probably from Proto-Germanic *brust- "bud, shoot," from PIE *bhreus- "to swell, sprout" (see breast (n.)). It lost its -t in English perhaps on the mistaken notion that the letter was a past-participle inflection. The figurative extension to "peruse" (books) is 1870s, American English. Related: Browsed; browsing.

chest (n.)

Old English cest "box, coffer, casket," usually large and with a hinged lid, from Proto-Germanic *kista (source also of Old Norse and Old High German kista, Old Frisian, Middle Dutch, German kiste, Dutch kist), an early borrowing from Latin cista "chest, box," from Greek kistē "a box, basket," from PIE *kista "woven container" (Beekes compares Middle Irish cess "basket, causeway of wickerwork, bee-hive," Old Welsh cest).

The meaning of the English word was extended to "thorax, trunk of the body from the neck to the diaphragm" c. 1400, replacing breast (n.) in that sense, on the metaphor of the ribs as a "box" for the heart. The meaning "place where public money is kept (common chest, mid-15c.) was extended to "public funds" (1580s). Chest of drawers is from 1670s.

redbreast (n.)

also red-breast, early 14c., of the English robin (Erithacus rubecula), from red (adj.1) + breast (n.). Later of the larger, orange-breasted American bird (Turdus migratorius). Related: Red-breasted.