Webster's Dictionary, 1913

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Braccate adjective [ Latin bracatus wearing breeches, from bracae breeches.] (Zoology) Furnished with feathers which conceal the feet.

Brace noun [ Old French brace , brasse , the two arms, embrace, fathom, French brasse fathom, from Latin bracchia the arms (stretched out), plural of bracchium arm; confer Greek ....]
1. That which holds anything tightly or supports it firmly; a bandage or a prop.

2. A cord, ligament, or rod, for producing or maintaining tension, as a cord on the side of a drum.

The little bones of the ear drum do in straining and relaxing it as the braces of the war drum do in that.
Derham.

3. The state of being braced or tight; tension.

The laxness of the tympanum, when it has lost its brace or tension.
Holder.

4. (Arch. & Engin.) A piece of material used to transmit, or change the direction of, weight or pressure; any one of the pieces, in a frame or truss, which divide the structure into triangular parts. It may act as a tie, or as a strut, and serves to prevent distortion of the structure, and transverse strains in its members. A boiler brace is a diagonal stay, connecting the head with the shell.

5. (Print.) A vertical curved line connecting two or more words or lines, which are to be taken together; thus, boll , bowl ; or, in music, used to connect staves.

6. (Nautical) A rope reeved through a block at the end of a yard, by which the yard is moved horizontally; also, a rudder gudgeon.

7. (Mech.) A curved instrument or handle of iron or wood, for holding and turning bits, etc.; a bitstock.

8. A pair; a couple; as, a brace of ducks; now rarely applied to persons, except familiarly or with some contempt. "A brace of greyhounds." Shak.

He is said to have shot . . . fifty brace of pheasants.
Addison.

A brace of brethren, both bishops, both eminent for learning and religion, now appeared in the church.
Fuller.

But you, my brace of lords.
Shak.

9. plural Straps or bands to sustain trousers; suspenders.

I embroidered for you a beautiful pair of braces .
Thackeray.

10. Harness; warlike preparation. [ Obsolete]

For that it stands not in such warlike brace .
Shak.

11. Armor for the arm; vantbrace.

12. (Mining) The mouth of a shaft. [ Cornwall]

Angle brace . See under Angle .

Brace transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Braced ; present participle & verbal noun Bracing .]
1. To furnish with braces; to support; to prop; as, to brace a beam in a building.

2. To draw tight; to tighten; to put in a state of tension; to strain; to strengthen; as, to brace the nerves.

And welcome war to brace her drums.
Campbell.

3. To bind or tie closely; to fasten tightly.

The women of China, by bracing and binding them from their infancy, have very little feet.
Locke.

Some who spurs had first braced on.
Sir W. Scott.

4. To place in a position for resisting pressure; to hold firmly; as, he braced himself against the crowd.

A sturdy lance in his right hand he braced .
Fairfax.

5. (Nautical) To move around by means of braces; as, to brace the yards.

To brace about (Nautical) , to turn (a yard) round for the contrary tack. -- To brace a yard (Nautical) , to move it horizontally by means of a brace. -- To brace in (Nautical) , to turn (a yard) by hauling in the weather brace. -- To brace one's self , to call up one's energies. "He braced himself for an effort which he was little able to make." J. D. Forbes. -- To brace to (Nautical) , to turn (a yard) by checking or easing off the lee brace, and hauling in the weather one, to assist in tacking. -- To brace up (Nautical) , to bring (a yard) nearer the direction of the keel by hauling in the lee brace. -- To brace up sharp (Nautical) , to turn (a yard) as far forward as the rigging will permit.

Brace intransitive verb To get tone or vigor; to rouse one's energies; -- with up . [ Colloq.]

Bracelet noun [ French bracelet , dim. of Old French bracel armlet, prop. little arm, dim. of bras arm, from Latin bracchium . See Brace , noun ]
1. An ornamental band or ring, for the wrist or the arm; in modern times, an ornament encircling the wrist, worn by women or girls.

2. A piece of defensive armor for the arm. Johnson.

Bracer noun
1. That which braces, binds, or makes firm; a band or bandage.

2. A covering to protect the arm of the bowman from the vibration of the string; also, a brassart. Chaucer.

3. A medicine, as an astringent or a tonic, which gives tension or tone to any part of the body. Johnson.

Brach (brăk) noun [ Middle English brache a kind of scenting hound or setting dog, Old French brache , French braque , from Old High German braccho , German bracke ; possibly akin to English fragrant , from Latin fragrare to smell.] A bitch of the hound kind. Shak.

Brachelytra noun plural [ New Latin , from Greek short + ... a covering.] (Zoology) A group of beetles having short elytra, as the rove beetles.

Brachia noun plural See Brachium .

Brachial or adjective [ Latin brachialis ( bracch -), from bracchium ( bracch -) arm: confer French brachial .]
1. (Anat.) Pertaining or belonging to the arm; as, the brachial artery; the brachial nerve.

2. Of the nature of an arm; resembling an arm.

Brachiata noun plural [ See Brachiate .] (Zoology) A division of the Crinoidea, including those furnished with long jointed arms. See Crinoidea .

Brachiate adjective [ Latin brachiatus ( bracch -) with boughs or branches like arms, from brackium ( bracch -) arm.] (Botany) Having branches in pairs, decussated, all nearly horizontal, and each pair at right angles with the next, as in the maple and lilac.

Brachioganoid noun One of the Brachioganoidei.

Brachioganoidei noun plural [ New Latin , from Latin brachium ( bracch -) arm + New Latin ganoidei .] (Zoology) An order of ganoid fishes of which the bichir of Africa is a living example. See Crossopterygii .

Brachiolaria noun plural [ New Latin , from Latin brachiolum ( bracch -), dim. of brachium ( bracch -) arm.] (Zoology) A peculiar early larval stage of certain starfishes, having a bilateral structure, and swimming by means of bands of vibrating cilia.

Brachiopod noun [ Confer F. brachiopode .] (Zoology) One of the Brachiopoda, or its shell.

Brachiopoda noun [ New Latin , from Greek ... arm + -poda .] (Zoology) A class of Molluscoidea having a symmetrical bivalve shell, often attached by a fleshy peduncle.

» Within the shell is a pair of "arms," often long and spirally coiled, bearing rows of ciliated tentacles by which a current of water is made to flow into the mantle cavity, bringing the microscopic food to the mouth between the bases of the arms. The shell is both opened and closed by special muscles. They form two orders; Lyopoma , in which the shell is thin, and without a distinct hinge, as in Lingula ; and Arthropoma , in which the firm calcareous shell has a regular hinge, as in Rhynchonella . See Arthropomata .

Brachium noun ; plural Bracchia [ Latin brachium or bracchium , arm.] (Anat.) The upper arm; the segment of the fore limb between the shoulder and the elbow.

Brachman noun [ Latin Brachmanae , plural, Greek ....] See Brahman . [ Obsolete]

Brachycatalectic noun [ Greek ...; brachy`s short + ... to leave off; confer ... incomplete.] (Gr. & Last. Pros.) A verse wanting two syllables at its termination.

Brachycephalic, Brachycephalous adjective [ Greek brachy`s short + ... head.] (Anat.) Having the skull short in proportion to its breadth; shortheaded; -- in distinction from dolichocephalic .

Brachycephaly, Brachycephalism noun [ Confer French Brachycéphalie ] . (Anat.) The state or condition of being brachycephalic; shortness of head.

Brachyceral adjective [ Greek brachy`s short + ... horn.] (Zoology) Having short antennæ, as certain insects.

Brachydiagonal adjective [ Greek brachy`s short + English diagonal .] Pertaining to the shorter diagonal, as of a rhombic prism.

Brachydiagonal axis , the shorter lateral axis of an orthorhombic crystal.

Brachydiagonal noun The shorter of the diagonals in a rhombic prism.

Brachydome noun [ Greek brachy`s short + English dome .] (Crystallog.) A dome parallel to the shorter lateral axis. See Dome .

Brachygrapher noun A writer in short hand; a stenographer.

He asked the brachygrapher whether he wrote the notes of the sermon.
Gayton.

Brachygraphy noun [ Greek brachy`s short + -graphy : confer French brachygraphie .] Stenography. B. Jonson.

Brachylogy noun [ Greek ... : brachy`s short + ... discourse: confer French brachylogie .] (Rhet.) Conciseness of expression; brevity.

Brachypinacoid noun [ Greek brachy`s short + English pinacoid .] (Crytallog.) A plane of an orthorhombic crystal which is parallel both to the vertical axis and to the shorter lateral (brachydiagonal) axis.

Brachyptera noun plural [ New Latin , from Greek ... short-winged; brachy`s short + ... feather, wing.] (Zoology) A group of Coleoptera having short wings; the rove beetles.

Brachypteres noun pl. [ New Latin See Brachyptera . ] (Zoology) A group of birds, including auks, divers, and penguins.

Brachypterous adjective [ Greek ... : confer French brachyptère .] (Zoology) Having short wings.

Brachystochrone noun [ Incorrect for brachistochrone , from Greek bra`chistos shortest (superl. of brachy`s short) + ... time : confer French brachistochrone . ] (Math.) A curve, in which a body, starting from a given point, and descending solely by the force of gravity, will reach another given point in a shorter time than it could by any other path. This curve of quickest descent , as it is sometimes called, is, in a vacuum, the same as the cycloid .

Brachytypous adjective [ Greek ... short + ... stamp, form.] (Min.) Of a short form.

Brachyura noun plural [ New Latin , from Greek brachy`s short + ... tail.] (Zoology) A group of decapod Crustacea, including the common crabs, characterized by a small and short abdomen, which is bent up beneath the large cephalo-thorax. [ Also spelt Brachyoura .] See Crab , and Illustration in Appendix.

Brachyural, Brachyurous adjective [ Confer French brachyure .] (Zoology) Of or pertaining to the Brachyura.

Brachyuran noun One of the Brachyura.

Bracing adjective Imparting strength or tone; strengthening; invigorating; as, a bracing north wind.

Bracing noun
1. The act of strengthening, supporting, or propping, with a brace or braces; the state of being braced.

2. (Engineering) Any system of braces; braces, collectively; as, the bracing of a truss.

Brack (brăk) noun [ Confer D. braak , Danish bræk , a breaking, Swedish & Icelandic brak a crackling, creaking. Confer Breach .] An opening caused by the parting of any solid body; a crack or breach; a flaw.

Stain or brack in her sweet reputation.
J. Fletcher.

Brack noun [ Dutch brak , adj., salt; confer LG. wrak refuse, German brack .] Salt or brackish water. [ Obsolete] Drayton.

Bracken noun [ Middle English braken , Anglo-Saxon bracce . See 2d Brake , noun ] A brake or fern. Sir W. Scott.

Bracket noun [ Confer OF. braguette codpiece, French brayette , Spanish bragueta , also a projecting mold in architecture; dim. from Latin bracae breeches; confer also, Old French bracon beam, prop, support; of unknown origin. Confer Breeches .]


1. (Architecture) An architectural member, plain or ornamental, projecting from a wall or pier, to support weight falling outside of the same; also, a decorative feature seeming to discharge such an office.

» This is the more general word. See Brace , Cantalever , Console , Corbel , Strut .

2. (Engin. & Mech.) A piece or combination of pieces, usually triangular in general shape, projecting from, or fastened to, a wall, or other surface, to support heavy bodies or to strengthen angles.

3. (Nautical) A shot, crooked timber, resembling a knee, used as a support.

4. (Mil.) The cheek or side of an ordnance carriage.

5. (Print.) One of two characters [ ], used to inclose a reference, explanation, or note, or a part to be excluded from a sentence, to indicate an interpolation, to rectify a mistake, or to supply an omission, and for certain other purposes; -- called also crotchet .

6. A gas fixture or lamp holder projecting from the face of a wall, column, or the like.

Bracket light , a gas fixture or a lamp attached to a wall, column, etc.

Bracket transitive verb [ imperfect & past participle Bracketed ; present participle & verbal noun Bracketing ] To place within brackets; to connect by brackets; to furnish with brackets.

Bracket noun (Gunnery) A figure determined by firing a projectile beyond a target and another short of it, as a basis for ascertaining the proper elevation of the piece; -- only used in the phrase, to establish a bracket . After the bracket is established shots are fired with intermediate elevations until the exact range is obtained. In the United States navy it is called fork .

Bracket transitive verb (Gunnery) To shoot so as to establish a bracket for (an object).

Bracketing noun (Architecture) A series or group of brackets; brackets, collectively.

Brackish adjective [ See Brack salt water.] Saltish, or salt in a moderate degree, as water in saline soil.

Springs in deserts found seem sweet, all brackish though they be.
Byron.

Brackishness noun The quality or state of being brackish, or somewhat salt.