- 1hard but easily broken brittle bones/nails The paint was brittle with age.
- 2a brittle mood or state of mind is one that appears to be happy or strong but is actually nervous and easily damaged a brittle personality
- 3(of a sound) hard and sharp in an unpleasant way a brittle laugh “Not at all,” she said in a brittle voice, avoiding his eye.
- noun [uncountable] the hardness and brittleness of coal There was a brittleness to his tone.
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