American English

Definition of brittle adjective from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1hard but easily broken brittle bones/nails The paint was brittle with age.
  2. 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. 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.
  4. brittleness
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    noun [uncountable] the hardness and brittleness of coal There was a brittleness to his tone.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: brittle