- 1 [intransitive, transitive] to take air into your lungs and send it out again through your nose or mouth He breathed deeply before speaking again. The air was so cold we could hardly breathe. She was beginning to breathe more easily. He was breathing heavily after the sprint. breathe something Most people don't realize that they are breathing polluted air.
- 2 [transitive] breathe something (+ adv./prep.) to send air, smoke, or a particular smell out of your mouth He came close, breathing alcohol fumes all over me. say quietly
- 3[transitive] breathe something + speech (literary) to say something quietly “I'm over here,” she breathed. of wine
- 4[intransitive] if you allow wine to breathe, you open the bottle and let air get in before you drink it of cloth/skin
- 5[intransitive] if cloth, leather, skin, etc. can breathe, air can move around or through it Cotton clothing allows your skin to breathe. feeling/quality
- 6[transitive] breathe something (formal) to be full of a particular feeling or quality Her performance breathed wit and charm. Idioms
verbjump to other results
NAmE//brið//Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they breathe
he / she / it breathes
past simple breathed
-ing form breathing
to feel calm again after something unpleasant or frightening has ended Once he was safely back in prison, she was able to breathe easy again.
breathe (easy/easily/freely) againjump to other results
to watch closely what someone is doing in a way that makes them feel anxious and/or annoyed I can't get any work done with you breathing down my neck.
breathe down somebody's neck(informal)jump to other results
to relax and stop worrying You can rest easy—I'm not going to tell anyone.
breathe/rest easyjump to other results
breathe your last(literary)jump to other results
to improve something by introducing new ideas and making people more interested in it The results of their research have breathed new life into the debate.
breathe (new) life into somethingjump to other results
to be very enthusiastic about something He just lives and breathes football. Phrasal Verbsbreathe inbreathe somethinginbreathe outbreathe somethingout
live and breathe somethingjump to other results