WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2019
breathe /brið/USA pronunciation   v.,  breathed /briðd/USA pronunciation  , breath•ing. 
  1. Physiologyto take (air, etc.) into the lungs and send (it) out;
    inhale and exhale: [no object]The patient began to breathe normally. She began to breathe in and out normally.[+ object]Just breathe that pure mountain air!
  2. to live;
    exist:[no object]The ruined economy is barely breathing.
  3. Textiles (of a material) to allow air and moisture to pass through easily:[no object]That polyester shirt doesn't breathe.
  4. Wine (of a wine) to be open to the air after being uncorked, in order to develop flavor and bouquet:[no object]We opened the bottle and let the wine breathe.
  5. [+ object + into + object] to put in as if by breathing;
    infuse: tried to breathe life into the party.
  6. [+ object] to speak;
    murmur: Don't breathe a word of it to anyone.
  1. Idiomsbreathe down someone's neck, to watch or follow someone closely, in order to control or chase after:I hate working here because the boss is always breathing down my neck.
  2. Idiomsbreathe easily or breathe easy or breathe freely, [no object] to have relief from worry, fear, tension, or pressure:You can all breathe easy now: the operation was a success.
  3. Idiomsbreathe one's last, to die.

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2019
breathe  (brēᵺ),USA pronunciation v.,  breathed (brēᵺd),USA pronunciation  breath•ing. 
  1. to take air, oxygen, etc., into the lungs and expel it;
    inhale and exhale;
  2. (in speech) to control the outgoing breath in producing voice and speech sounds.
  3. to pause, as for breath;
    take rest:How about giving me a chance to breathe?
  4. to move gently or blow lightly, as air.
  5. to live;
    exist:Hardly a man breathes who has not known great sorrow.
  6. to be redolent of.
  7. Textiles(of a material) to allow air and moisture to pass through easily:The jacket is comfortable because the fabric breathes.
  8. (of the skin) to absorb oxygen and give off perspiration.
  9. Wine(of a wine) to be exposed to air after being uncorked, in order to develop flavor and bouquet.

  1. to inhale and exhale in respiration.
  2. to exhale:Dragons breathe fire.
  3. to inject as if by breathing;
    infuse:She breathed life into the party.
  4. to give utterance to;
  5. to express;
  6. to allow to rest or recover breath:to breathe a horse.
  7. to deprive of breath;
  8. to cause to pant;
  9. breathe down someone's neck: 
    • to be close to someone in pursuit;
      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?
  10. 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. 
  11. breathe one's last, to die:He breathed his last and was buried in the churchyard.
  12. not breathe a word or  syllable, to maintain secrecy;
    keep a matter confidential:I'll tell you if you promise not to breathe a word.
  • Middle English brethen, derivative of breath 1250–1300
    • 14.See corresponding entry in Unabridged utter, tell, murmur, voice;
      reveal, divulge.

Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

breathe /briːð/ vb
  1. to take in oxygen from (the surrounding medium, esp air) and give out carbon dioxide; respire
  2. (intransitive) to exist; be alive
  3. (intransitive) to rest to regain breath, composure, etc
  4. (intransitive) (esp of air) to blow lightly
  5. (intransitive) to take in air, esp for combustion
  6. (transitive) to articulate (a speech sound) without vibration of the vocal cords
  7. to exhale or emit: the dragon breathed fire
  8. (transitive) to impart; instil: to breathe confidence into the actors
  9. (transitive) to speak softly; whisper
  10. (transitive) to permit to rest: to breathe a horse
  11. (intransitive) (of a material) to allow air to pass through so that perspiration can evaporate
  12. breathe again, breathe freely, breathe easilyto feel relief
  13. breathe one's lastto die or be finished or defeated
Etymology: 13th Century: from breath

'breathe' also found in these entries:

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