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Multiple Meanings

It was a difficult breech birth.
rear in various senses. It is most commonly used today in the phrase breech birth in reference to a baby who comes out of the birth canal butt-first rather than head-first. More-archaic senses seen in classic literature include:
  • breechcloth — a form of loincloth consisting in a strip of material passed between the thighs and held up in front and behind by a belt or string
  • breeches — pants
  • a cannon’s breech — the rear of a gun

A breech birth refers to a child born bottom first. A less common sense of breech refers to the lower part of a pulley block.
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