adverb, adjective
side by side; beside each other in a line: They walked two abreast down the street.
equal to or alongside in progress, attainment, or awareness (usually followed by of or with ): to keep abreast of scientific developments; keeping abreast with the times.

1590–1600; a-1 + breast

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World English Dictionary
abreast (əˈbrɛst)
adj (foll by of or with)
1.  alongside each other and facing in the same direction
2.  up to date (with); fully conversant (with)

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

mid-15c., on brest, from a- (1) + breast; the notion is of "with breasts in line." To keep abreast in fig. sense of "stay up-to-date" is from 1650s.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Keep abreast of trends in library services and disseminate that information.
We paced the great turquoise shape, keeping abreast of the flukes as the whale
  coursed along underwater to starboard.
If you frequently use a web browser, this makes a quick, easy way to stay
  abreast of the news.
Bad hair is a result of ignorance, of a refusal to keep abreast of the great.
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