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breech


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
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breech breeches
Strongly Associated with:   breach
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Samples:
  • It was a difficult breech birth.
  • The rocket is breech-loaded and a two-person team can fire it six times a minute.
  • "I’m the breech-piece mule of number two gun of the First Screw Battery," said the mule,
    Rudyard Kipling  --  The Jungle Book
  • Kropp stalks up, with his breeches rolled up and his feet bare.
    Erich Maria Remarque  --  All Quiet on the Western Front

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  • They are big and clumsy, the breeches are tucked into them, and standing up one looks well-built and powerful in these great drainpipes.
    Erich Maria Remarque  --  All Quiet on the Western Front
  • One day, as the taking-in bell rang, Albert, beating coal dust from his breeches, said, "Wait a minute, Jean Louise."
    Harper Lee  --  Go Set a Watchman
  • The dining room table was covered with newspapers, cleaning rods, a double-ended breech-brush, used patches, and rags stained with barrel oil, solvents, and gunpowder.
    Laurie Halse Anderson  --  The Impossible Knife of Memory
  • I was alarmed but not nervous, as I was a doctor of long experience, having turned many a breech fetus and safely delivered a near-equal number.
    Chang-rae Lee  --  A Gesture Life
  • "Then you might have a thought for somebody else!" snapped Nat, slapping the water out of his dripping breeches.
    Elizabeth George Speare  --  The Witch of Blackbird Pond
  • I spent flying down the stair rails at home, never noticing the gradual shredding of my breeches.
    Gail Carson Levine  --  Ella Enchanted

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  • If only he could be wearing a breechcloth instead of tight English breeches!
    Elizabeth George Speare  --  The Sign of the Beaver
  • It was a good wagonload: two hogsheads of rum, a half dozen big sacks of salt, a couple of barrels of molasses; a large chest of tea, a sack of coffee beans, a dozen brass kettles and some tin pots; a chest of breeches and some brass buckles; some drills, knives, files, axes and spades; and small boxes of pepper, allspice, cinnamon, and white powdered sugar.
    James Lincoln Collier  --  My Brother Sam is Dead
  • Four stories up, the Austrians clap another shell into the smoking breech of the 88 and double-check the traverse and clamp their ears as the gun discharges, but down here Werner hears only the radio voices of his childhood.
    Anthony Doerr  --  All the Light We Cannot See
  • They smell of grubby flesh, of scalp, but also of leather, from the knee patches on their breeches, and wool, from the breeches themselves, which come down only to below the knee, and lace up there like football pants.
    Margaret Atwood  --  Cat’s Eye
  • With his black leather breeches and jerkin, his hunting knife, and his bow and quiver, he might have been Robin Hood’s evil, better-looking brother.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Blood of Olympus
  • He wore a red silk waistcoat under a snuff-colored coat with silver buttons, a starched linen shirt, and black breeches.
    Laurie Halse Anderson  --  Chains
  • I was quite sure I was still hallucinating when the sound of shots was followed by the appearance of five or six men dressed in red coats and knee breeches, waving muskets.
    Diana Gabaldon  --  Outlander
  • He wore riding breeches and laced boots.
    John Steinbeck  --  The Grapes of Wrath
  • We have to open her womb and take the baby out, because it is in the breech position.
    Khaled Hosseini  --  A Thousand Splendid Suns
  • The other men were dressed more simply-in breeches and stained white shirts.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Sea of Monsters
  • A fat red-faced man in check breeches and gaiters, who looked like a publican, was stroking her nose and feeding her with sugar.
    George Orwell  --  Animal Farm
  • Inside was a frilly white shirt, a pair of breeches, and a long wool coat with epaulets.
    Gayle Forman  --  If I Stay
  • Frodo took it from his breeches-pocket, where it was clasped to a chain that hung from his belt.
    J.R.R. Tolkien  --  The Fellowship of the Ring
  • I could not possibly hope to be a lady if I wore breeches; when I said I could do nothing in a dress, she said I wasn’t supposed to be doing things that required pants.
    Harper Lee  --  To Kill a Mockingbird
  • He thought I was some kind of cross between Billy the Kid and Buffalo Bill, quick on the draw and Dang mah breeches!
    Marcus Luttrell  --  Lone Survivor
  • He had just entered, wearing an embroidered court uniform, knee breeches, and shoes, and had stars on his breast and a serene expression on his flat face.
    Leo Tolstoy  --  War and Peace
  • When he emerged, dripping, into the lighted room, he found a towel, a fine linen shirt, and a pair of breeches.
    Christopher Paolini  --  Eragon
  • Albert was impatient to see how he looked in his new dress—a jacket and breeches of blue velvet, silk stockings with clocks, shoes with buckles, and a silk waistcoat.
    Alexandre Dumas  --  The Count of Monte Cristo
  • His breeches, his white rubber shoes and his jauntily slung waterproof expressed youth.
    James Joyce  --  Dubliners
  • He still wore his yellow coat, his black breeches, and his old hat.
    Victor Hugo  --  Les Miserables
  • Finally, my hands found the floor and I shoved my way through, a breech birth, falling onto the dark green mat.
    Stephenie Meyer  --  The Host
  • If I can’t quite get the hang of poverty-chastity-and-obedience, I can learn instead about vermifuges, breech deliveries, arrow wounds, gangrene, and elephantiasis.
    Barbara Kingsolver  --  The Poisonwood Bible
  • Here, we found a gentleman with one eye, in a velveteen suit and knee-breeches, who wiped his nose with his sleeve on being interrupted in the perusal of the newspaper.
    Charles Dickens  --  Great Expectations
  • Several times we shipped a little water, and my breeches and the tails of my coat were all soaking wet before we had gone a hundred yards.
    Robert Louis Stevenson  --  Treasure Island
  • He couldn’t stand by and watch a horse colic or a cow labor with a breech calf even though it meant personal ruin.
    Sara Gruen  --  Water for Elephants
  • At your age a rod to your breech were fitter than a sword in your fist, ha!
    C.S. Lewis  --  The Horse and His Boy
  • Naked but for a white cotton breech-cloth, a boy of about eighteen stepped out of the crowd and stood before him, his hands crossed over his chest, his head bowed.
    Aldous Huxley  --  Brave New World
  • Rejuvenated, he stripped out of his breeches and tunic and outfitted himself in the clothes he had worn to Ajihad’s funeral.
    Christopher Paolini  --  Eldest
  • "They wear nayther coat nor breeches: you can’t make much out o’ their shapes."
    George Eliot  --  Silas Marner
  • Against the wall were ranged, in regular array, a long row of elm boards cut in the same shape: looking in the dim light, like high-shouldered ghosts with their hands in their breeches pockets.
    Charles Dickens  --  Oliver Twist
  • They wore high boots, ski boots, ski trousers, breeches, headscarves, and they carried bundles, rucksacks and walking sticks.
    Wladyslaw Szpilman  --  The Pianist
  • Rinaldi took the note, folded it without rising from the bed and slid it in his breeches pocket.
    Ernest Hemingway  --  A Farewell to Arms
  • Old farmers, a spare leathern-faced race, in homespun coats and breeches, blue stockings, huge shoes, and magnificent pewter buckles.
    Washington Irving  --  The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
  • We know but few men, a great many coats and breeches.
    Henry David Thoreau  --  Walden
  • The rest of it went in a doublet of fine cloth and velvet breeches and shoes to match for holidays, while on week-days he made a brave figure in his best homespun.
    Miguel de Cervantes  --  Don Quixote
  • At the next moment, the breech of Hawkeye’s rifle fell on the naked head of his adversary, whose muscles appeared to wither under the shock, as he sank from the arms of Duncan, flexible and motionless.
    James Fenimore Cooper  --  The Last of the Mohicans
  • Then only was he permitted to be seen, spectacularly poring over large books, and casting his breeches and gaiters into the general weight of the establishment.
    Charles Dickens  --  A Tale of Two Cities
  • It may have been the distorting properties of her anger, or the muck of this alien city, but when she imagined the soldiers’ mouths sewn shut, their coats and breeches tore at the seams instead.
    Frank Beddor  --  The Looking Glass Wars
  • By this time the tide beginning to flow, I perceived my coat, waistcoat, and shirt, swim away, which I had left on the shore; as for my linen breeches and stockings, I swam with them to the ship; but I soon found clothes enough, though I took no more than I wanted for the present.
    Daniel Defoe  --  Robinson Crusoe
  • It was a habit with Scrooge, whenever he became thoughtful, to put his hands in his breeches pockets.
    Charles Dickens  --  A Christmas Carol
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Associated words [difficulty]:   breech [2] , breach [1]
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Most commonly used in these subjects:   Classic Literature, Medicine, History
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