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Webster 1913 Edition


Abreast

A-breast′

,
adv.
[Pref.
a-
+
breast
.]
1.
Side by side, with breasts in a line;
as, “Two men could hardly walk
abreast
.”
Macaulay.
2.
(Naut.)
Side by side; also, opposite; over against; on a line with the vessel’s beam; – with of.
3.
Up to a certain level or line; equally advanced;
as, to keep
abreast
of [or with] the present state of science
.
4.
At the same time; simultaneously.
[Obs.]
Abreast
therewith began a convocation.
Fuller.

Webster 1828 Edition


Abreast

ABREAST'

,
adv.
abrest', [from a and breast.]
1.
Side by side; with the breasts in a line.
Two men rode abreast.
2.
In marine language, ships are abreast when their heads are equally advanced; and they are abreast of objects when the objects are on a line with the beam. - Hence,
Opposite; against; on a line with - as a ship was abreast of Montauk point - A seaman's phrase.

Definition 2021


abreast

abreast

English

Alternative forms

Adverb

abreast (comparative more abreast, superlative most abreast)

  1. Side by side and facing forward. [First attested from around (1350 to 1470.)][2]
    • 2012 July 15, Richard Williams, “Tour de France 2012: Carpet tacks cannot force Bradley Wiggins off track”, in Guardian Unlimited:
      On Sunday afternoon it was as dark as night, with barely room for two riders abreast on a gradient that touches 20%.
    • (Can we date this quote?), Thomas Babington Macaulay, (Please provide the title of the work):
      Two men could hardly walk abreast.
  2. (figuratively) Alongside; parallel to. [First attested in the mid 17th century.][2]
  3. Informed, well-informed, familiar, acquainted. [First attested in the mid 17th century.][2]
  4. Followed by of or with: up to a certain level or line; equally advanced. [First attested in the mid 17th century.][2]
    She believes it is important to keep abreast of new scientific developments.
  5. (nautical) Side by side; also, opposite; over against; on a line with the vessel's beam. [First attested in the late 17th century.][2]
  6. (obsolete) At the same time; simultaneously.
    • (Can we date this quote?), Thomas Fuller, (Please provide the title of the work):
      Abreast therewith began a convocation.

Usage notes

  • (nautical): Abreast is followed by the word of.
  • (alongside): Abreast is followed by with or of.
  • (informed): Abreast is followed by with or of.
  • (up to a certain level): Abreast is followed by with or of.

Synonyms

Translations

Adjective

abreast (comparative more abreast, superlative most abreast)

  1. Side by side, facing forward. [First attested from around (1350 to 1470.)][2]
  2. (figuratively) Alongside; parallel to. [First attested in the mid 17th century.][2]
  3. Informed, well-informed, familiar, acquainted. [First attested in the mid 17th century.][2]
  4. Up to a certain level or line; equally advanced; as, to keep abreast of [or with] the present state of science. [First attested in the mid 17th century.][2]
  5. (nautical) Side by side; also, opposite; over against; on a line with the vessel's beam. [First attested in the late 17th century.][2]

Preposition

abreast

  1. Abreast of; alongside.[3]
    This ship sank abreast the island.

References

  1. abreast” in Douglas Harper, Online Etymology Dictionary (2001).
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Lesley Brown (editor), The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary, 5th edition (Oxford University Press, 2003 [1933], ISBN 978-0-19-860575-7), page 8
  3. Philip Babcock Gove (editor), Webster's Third International Dictionary of the English Language, Unabridged (G. & C. Merriam Co., 1976 [1909], ISBN 0-87779-101-5), page 5

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