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brink

[bringk] /brɪŋk/
noun
1.
the edge or margin of a steep place or of land bordering water.
2.
any extreme edge; verge.
3.
a crucial or critical point, especially of a situation or state beyond which success or catastrophe occurs:
We were on the brink of war.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English brink < Old Norse (Danish) brink, cognate with MLG brink edge, hillside, Old Norse brekka slope, hill
Related forms
brinkless, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for brinks

brink

/brɪŋk/
noun
1.
the edge, border, or verge of a steep place: the brink of the precipice
2.
the highest point; top: the sun fell below the brink of the hill
3.
the land at the edge of a body of water
4.
the verge of an event or state: the brink of disaster
Word Origin
C13: from Middle Dutch brinc, of Germanic origin; compare Old Norse brekka slope, Middle Low German brink edge of a field
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for brinks

brink

n.

early 13c., from Middle Low German brink "edge," or Danish brink "steepness, shore, bank, grassy edge," from Proto-Germanic *brenkon, probably from PIE *bhreng-, variant of root *bhren- "project, edge" (cf. Lithuanian brinkti "to swell").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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