See also: Brace and brącĕ

English edit

Etymology edit

From Middle English brace, from Old French brace (arm), from Latin bracchia, the nominative and accusative plural of bracchium (arm).

Pronunciation edit

  • IPA(key): /bɹeɪs/
  • Rhymes: -eɪs
  • (file)

Noun edit

brace (plural braces)

  1. (obsolete) Armor for the arm; vambrace.
  2. (obsolete) A measurement of length, originally representing a person's outstretched arms.
  3. A curved instrument or handle of iron or wood, for holding and turning bits, etc.; a bitstock.
  4. That which holds anything tightly or supports it firmly; a bandage or a prop.
  5. A cord, ligament, or rod, for producing or maintaining tension.
  6. A thong used to regulate the tension of a drum.
    • 1713, W[illiam] Derham, Physico-Theology: Or, A Demonstration of the Being and Attributes of God, from His Works of Creation. [], London: [] W[illiam] Innys, [], →OCLC:
      The little bones of the ear drum do in straining and relaxing it as the braces of the war drum do in that.
  7. The state of being braced or tight; tension.
    • 1669, William Holder, Elements of Speech: An Essay of Inquiry into the Natural Production of Letters: [], London: [] T. N[ewcomb] for J[ohn] Martyn printer to the R[oyal] Society, [], →OCLC, page 113:
      And I am of opinion, that the moſt frequent cauſe of Deafneſs is to be attributed to the Laxneſs of the Tympanum, vvhen it has loſt its Brace or Tenſion by ſome irregularity in the Figure of thoſe Bones, or defect in that Muſcle: []
  8. Harness; warlike preparation.
  9. (typography) A curved, pointed line, also known as "curly bracket": { or } connecting two or more words or lines, which are to be considered together, such as in {role, roll}; in music, used to connect staves.
  10. A pair, a couple; originally used of dogs, and later of animals generally (e.g., a brace of conies) and then other things, but rarely human persons. (The plural in this sense is unchanged.) In British use (as plural), this is a particularly common reference to game birds.
    • 1610–1611 (date written), William Shakespeare, “The Tempest”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies [] (First Folio), London: [] Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, →OCLC, [Act V, scene i]:
      But you, my brace of lords, were I so minded, / I here could pluck his highness' frown upon you, / And justify you traitors
    • 1655, Thomas Fuller, edited by James Nichols, The Church History of Britain, [], new edition, volumes (please specify |volume=I to III), London: [] [James Nichols] for Thomas Tegg and Son, [], published 1837, →OCLC:
      A brace of brethren, both bishops, both eminent for learning and religion, now appeared in the church
      The spelling has been modernized.
    • 1716 May 4 (Gregorian calendar), Joseph Addison, “The Free-holder: No. 36. Monday, April 23. [1716.]”, in The Works of the Right Honourable Joseph Addison, Esq; [], volume IV, London: [] Jacob Tonson, [], published 1721, →OCLC:
      He is said to have shot [] fifty brace of pheasants.
    • 1859, George Meredith, chapter V, in The Ordeal of Richard Feverel. A History of Father and Son. [], volumes (please specify |volume=I to III), London: Chapman and Hall, →OCLC:
      "Are you a prime shot?'" said Richard. / Ripton nodded knowingly, and answered, "Pretty good." / "Then ww'll have a dozen brase apiece today," said Richard.
    • 1881, P. Chr. Asbjörnsen [i.e., Peter Christen Asbjørnsen], translated by H. L. Brækstad, Round the Yule Log. Norwegian Folk and Fairy Tales, London: Sampson Low, Marston, Searle, & Rivington, →OCLC, page 68:
      There were four of us, my friend the captain, myself, an old sportsman from Sognedale, called Peter Sandaker, and a smart boy, who had charge of two brace of hounds.
  11. 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.
  12. (nautical) A rope reeved through a block at the end of a yard, by which the yard is moved horizontally; also, a rudder gudgeon.
  13. (Britain, Cornwall, mining) The mouth of a shaft.
  14. (Britain, chiefly in the plural) Straps or bands to sustain trousers; suspenders.
  15. (plural in North America, singular or plural in the UK) A system of wires, brackets, and elastic bands used to correct crooked teeth or to reduce overbite.
  16. (soccer) Two goals scored by one player in a game.
    • 28 March 2023, Graeme McGarry, “Scott McTominay earns place in history as Scotland stun Spain”, in The Herald[1]:
      The Manchester United midfielder’s late brace against Cyprus at the weekend was welcome, but will become no more than a footnote of his Scotland career. His brace here to down the mighty Spanish will go down in history.
    • 2020 October 23, “What is a brace in soccer?”, in Goal[2]:
      To score a 'brace' means that you have scored two goals in a game.

Synonyms edit

Derived terms edit

Translations edit

Verb edit

brace (third-person singular simple present braces, present participle bracing, simple past and past participle braced)

  1. (transitive, intransitive) To prepare for something bad, such as an impact or blow.
    All hands, brace for impact!
    Brace yourself!
    The boy has no idea about everything that's been going on. You need to brace him for what's about to happen.
    • 2013 January 22, Phil McNulty, “Aston Villa 2-1 Bradford (3-4)”, in BBC[3]:
      Bradford would have been braced for an early assault from Villa as they tried to cut the deficit - and so it proved as they struggled to control the physical presence and aerial threat of Benteke, who headed straight at Bradford keeper Matt Duke when he should have done better.
  2. To place in a position for resisting pressure; to hold firmly.
    He braced himself against the crowd.
    • 1845, Edward Fairfax (tr.), Godfrey of Bulloigne; or, The Recovery of Jerusalem: Done into English Heroical Verse:
      A sturdy lance in his right hand he braced.
  3. (nautical) To swing round the yards of a square rigged ship, using braces, to present a more efficient sail surface to the direction of the wind.
    to brace the yards
  4. To stop someone for questioning, usually said of police.
  5. To confront with questions, demands or requests.
    • 1980, Stephen King, The Wedding Gig:
      Just about then the young kid who had braced us when we came in uttered a curse and made for the door.
    • 2018 February 11, Colin Dexter, Russell Lewis, 58:13 from the start, in Endeavour(Cartouche), season 5, episode 2 (TV series), spoken by DCI Fred Thursday (Roger Allam):
      “Constable Fancy’s collecting evidence from his flat while Morse and me brace Valdemar.”
  6. To furnish with braces; to support; to prop.
    to brace a beam in a building
  7. To draw tight; to tighten; to put in a state of tension; to strain; to strengthen.
    to brace the nerves
  8. To bind or tie closely; to fasten tightly.

Synonyms edit

Derived terms edit

Translations edit

Related terms edit

Anagrams edit

Italian edit

Alternative forms edit

Etymology edit

Perhaps from Gothic *𐌱𐍂𐌰𐍃𐌰 (*brasa, glowing coal), from Proto-Germanic *brasō (gleed, crackling coal), Proto-Indo-European *bʰres- (to crack, break, burst). Cognate with French braise (embers), Swedish brasa (to roast), Icelandic brasa (to harden by fire). Most probably cognate to Sanskrit भ्रज (bhrája, fire).

Pronunciation edit

Noun edit

brace f (plural braci)

  1. (usually in the plural) embers
    Carne alla bracegrilled meat (literally, “meat [cooked] to the ember”)
    • 1947, Primo Levi, “Storia di dieci giorni”, in Se questo è un uomo [If This Is a Man], Torino: Einaudi, published 1987, →ISBN, page 201:
      Avevamo trovato legna e carbone, e anche brace proveniente dalle baracche bruciate.
      We had found wood and charcoal, and also embers coming from the burned shacks.

Derived terms edit

Middle English edit

Etymology 1 edit

From Old French brace, from Latin bracchia, plural of bracchium.

Alternative forms edit

Pronunciation edit

Noun edit

brace (uncountable)

  1. Vambrace; armour which protects the arm.
  2. A cord or brace for fastening or attaching things to something.
  3. A group or set of two dogs or canines.
  4. Wood used as a buttress or support for building.
  5. (rare) A support or buttress used in other applications.
  6. (rare) A kind of riding equipment or horse tack.
  7. (rare) A peninsula; a cape or slice of land jutting into the sea.
  8. (rare) A perch (unit of measure)
  9. (rare) A point of a cross or rood.
Derived terms edit
Descendants edit
  • English: brace
  • Scots: brace
References edit

Etymology 2 edit

Verb edit

brace

  1. Alternative form of bracen

Etymology 3 edit

Noun edit

brace

  1. Alternative form of bras

Old French edit

Etymology edit

From Latin brachia, bracchia, originally the plural of bracchium.

Noun edit

brace oblique singularf (oblique plural braces, nominative singular brace, nominative plural braces)

  1. arm (limb)

Related terms edit

Descendants edit

References edit

  • Godefroy, Frédéric, Dictionnaire de l’ancienne langue française et de tous ses dialectes du IXe au XVe siècle (1881) (brace)

Romanian edit

Alternative forms edit

Etymology edit

Inherited from Latin brācae, plural of brāca.

Noun edit

brace f pl (plural only)

  1. (rare, Bukovina) underwear, undergarments, drawers, unmentionables
    Synonyms: indispensabili, chiloți, izmene

Declension edit

Related terms edit