• (British, America) IPA: /bɹiːtʃ/


  1. (historical, now only in the plural) A garment whose purpose is to cover or clothe the buttocks. [from 11th c.]
  2. (now rare) The buttocks or backside. [from 16th c.]
    • 1624, John Smith, Generall Historie, in Kupperman 1988, p. 157:
      And he made a woman for playing the whore, sit upon a great stone, on her bare breech twenty-foure houres, onely with corne and water, every three dayes, till nine dayes were past […]
    • 1749, Henry Fielding, The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling, Book III ch viii
      "Oho!" says Thwackum, "you will not! then I will have it out of your br—h;" that being the place to which he always applied for information on every doubtful occasion.
  3. The part of a cannon or other firearm behind the chamber. [from 16th c.]
  4. (nautical) The external angle of knee timber, the inside of which is called the throat.
  5. A breech birth.
Translations Translations
  • French: culasse
  • German: Schwanzschraube
  • Italian: culatta
  • Russian: казённик

breech (not comparable)

  1. With the hips coming out before the head.

breech (not comparable)

  1. Born, or having been born, breech.

breech (breeches, present participle breeching; past and past participle breeched)

  1. (dated, transitive) To dress in breeches. (especially) To dress a boy in breeches or trousers for the first time.
    • 1748-1832, Jeremy Bentham, The Works of Jeremy Bentham, Volume 10:
      […] it occurred before I was breeched, and I was breeched at three years and a quarter old;
    • 18, Thomas Babington Macaulay, chapter 10, in The History of England from the Accession of James the Second, volume (please specify ), London: Longman, Brown, Green, and Longmans, OCLC 1069526323 ↗:
  2. (dated, transitive) To beat or spank on the buttocks.
  3. (transitive) To fit or furnish with a breech.
    to breech a gun
  4. (transitive) To fasten with breeching.
  5. (poetic, transitive, obsolete) To cover as if with breeches.
    • c. 1606, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of Macbeth”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act II, scene iii]:
      Their daggers unmannerly breeched with gore.

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