verb (used without object)
to take air, oxygen, etc., into the lungs and expel it; inhale and exhale; respire.
(in speech) to control
the outgoing breath
in producing voice and speech sounds.
to pause, as for breath
; take rest: How about giving me a chance to breathe?
to move gently or blow lightly, as air.
to live; exist: Hardly a man breathes who has not known great sorrow.
(of a material) to allow air and moisture to pass through easily: The jacket is comfortable because the fabric breathes.
(of the skin) to absorb oxygen and give off perspiration.
(of a wine) to be exposed to air after being uncorked, in order to develop flavor and bouquet.
verb (used with object)
to inhale and exhale in respiration.
to exhale: Dragons breathe fire.
to inject as if by breathing; infuse: She breathed life into the party.
to give utterance to; whisper.
to allow to rest or recover breath
: to breathe a horse.
to deprive of breath
; tire; exhaust.
to cause to pant; exercise.
18. breathe down someone's neck, a.
to be close to someone in pursuit; menace; threaten: Police from four states were breathing down his neck.
to watch someone closely so as to supervise or control: If everyone keeps breathing down my neck, how can I get my work done?
breathe freely, to have relief from anxiety, tension, or pressure: Now that the crisis was over, he could breathe freely. Also, breathe easily, breathe easy.
breathe one's last, to die: He breathed his last and was buried in the churchyard.
21. not breathe a word/syllable,
to maintain secrecy; keep a matter confidential: I'll tell you if you promise not to breathe a word.
Origin: 1250–1300; Middle English brethen, Related forms
derivative of breath
outbreathe, verb (used with object), outbreathed, outbreathing.
prebreathe, verb (used with object), prebreathed, prebreathing.
14. utter, tell, murmur, voice; reveal, divulge.