bricks and mortar

brick-and-mortar

[brik-uhn-mawr-ter]
adjective
1.
pertaining to conventional stores, businesses, etc., having physical buildings and facilities, as opposed to Internet or remote services.
2.
made of bricks and mortar.
Also, bricks-and-mortar.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
bricks and mortar
 
n
1.  a.  a building or buildings: he invested in bricks and mortar rather than stocks and shares
 b.  (as modifier): a bricks-and-mortar fortune
2.  a.  a physical business premises rather than an internet presence
 b.  (as modifier): bricks-and-mortar firms

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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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

bricks and mortar

Basic and essential, as in Matthew Arnold's essay (1865): "Margate, that bricks-and-mortar image of British Protestantism." This phrase transfers essential building materials to other fundamental matters. It also may be used more literally to denote a building or buildings (whether or not made of bricks and mortar), as in The alumni prefer to see their donations in the form of bricks and mortar. [Mid-1800s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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