What does breed mean?

Definitions for breed

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word breed.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. breed, strain, stocknoun

    a special variety of domesticated animals within a species

    "he experimented on a particular breed of white rats"; "he created a new strain of sheep"

  2. breedverb

    a special type

    "Google represents a new breed of entrepreneurs"

  3. engender, breed, spawnverb

    call forth

  4. breed, coververb

    copulate with a female, used especially of horses

    "The horse covers the mare"

  5. breedverb

    cause to procreate (animals)

    "She breeds dogs"

  6. breed, multiplyverb

    have young (animals) or reproduce (organisms)

    "pandas rarely breed in captivity"; "These bacteria reproduce"


  1. breednoun

    All animals or plants of the same species or subspecies.

  2. breednoun

    A race or lineage.

  3. breednoun

    A group of people with shared characteristics.

    People who were taught classical Greek and Latin at school are a dying breed.

  4. breedverb

    To sexually produce offspring.

  5. breedverb

    Of animals, to mate.

  6. breedverb

    To keep animals and have them reproduce in a way that improves the next generation's qualities.

  7. breedverb

    To arrange the mating of specific animals.

    She wanted to breed her cow to the neighbor's registered bull.

  8. breedverb

    To propagate or grow plants trying to give them certain qualities.

    He tries to breed blue roses.

  9. breedverb

    To make sure that one's young grow up to adulthood.

  10. breedverb

    To yield or result in.

  11. breedverb

    To ejaculate inside the penetratee during intercourse, especially in the rectum.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Breednoun

    Etymology: from the verb.

    I bring you witnesses,
    Twice fifteen thousand hearts of England’s breed. William Shakespeare.

    The horses were young and handsome, and of the best breed in the north. William Shakespeare, Henry VIII.

    Walled towns, stored arsenals, and ordnance; all this is but a sheep in a lion’s skin, except the breed and disposition of the people be stout and warlike. Francis Bacon, Essays, №. 30.

    Infectious streams of crowding sins began,
    And through the spurious breed and guilty nation ran. Wentworth Dillon.

    Rode fair Ascanius on a fiery steed,
    Queen Dido’s gift, and of the Tyrian breed. Dryden.

    A cousin of his last wife’s was proposed; but John would have no more of the breed. John Arbuthnot, Hist. of J. Bull.

    If thou wilt lend this money, lend it not
    As to thy friend; for when did friendship take
    A breed of barren metal of his friend? William Shakespeare, Mer. of Ven.

    She lays them in the sand, where they lie till they are hatched; sometimes above an hundred at a breed. Nehemiah Grew, Musæum.

  2. To BREEDverb

    preter. I bred, I have bred.

    Etymology: brædan , Sax.

    None fiercer in Numidia bred,
    With Carthage were in triumph led. Wentworth Dillon.

    Thereat he roared for exceeding pain,
    That, to have heard, great horrour would have bred. F. Q.

    Our own hearts we know, but we are not certain what hope the rites and orders of our church have bred in the hearts of others. Richard Hooker, b. iv.

    What hurt ill company, and overmuch liberty, breedeth in youth! Roger Ascham, Schoolmaster.

    Intemperance and lust breed infirmities and diseases, which, being propagated, spoil the strain of a nation. John Tillotson.

    My son Edgar! had he a hand to write this! a heart and brain to breed it in! William Shakespeare, King Lear.

    Children would breed their teeth with much less danger. John Locke, on Education.

    Mr. Harding, and the worthiest divine christendom hath bred for the space of some hundreds of years, were brought up together in the same university. Richard Hooker.

    Hail, foreign wonder!
    Whom, certain, these rough shades did never breed. John Milton.

    Whoe’er thou art, whose forward years are bent
    On state-affairs to guide the government;
    Hear first what Socrates of old has said
    To the lov’d youth, whom he at Athens bred. Dryden.

    To breed up the son to common sense,
    Is evermore the parent’s least expence. John Dryden, Juvenal.

    And left the pillagers, to rapine bred,
    Without controul, to strip and spoil the dead. Dryden.

    His farm may not remove his children too far from him, or the trade he breeds them up in. John Locke.

    Bred up in grief, can pleasure be our theme?
    Our endless anguish, does not nature claim?
    Reason and sorrow are to us the same. Matthew Prior.

    Ah, wretched me! by fates averse decreed
    To bring thee forth with pain, with care to breed. Dryden.

  3. To Breedverb

    Lucina, it seems, was breeding, and she did nothing but entertain the company with a discourse upon the difficulty of reckoning to a day. Spectator, №. 431.

    But could youth last, and love still breed,
    Had joys no date, and age no need;
    Then these delights my mind might move
    To live with thee, and be thy love. Walter Raleigh.

    Where they most breed and haunt, I have observ’d,
    The air is delicate. William Shakespeare, King Lear.

    There is a worm that breedeth in old snow, and dieth soon after it cometh out of the snow. Francis Bacon, Nat. Hist. №. 696.

    The caterpillar is one of the most general of worms, and breedeth of dew and leaves. Francis Bacon.

    It hath been the general tradition and belief, that maggots and flies breed in putrefied carcases. Richard Bentley.

    In the choice of swine, choose such to breed of as are of long large bodies. John Mortimer.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Breedverb

    to produce as offspring; to bring forth; to bear; to procreate; to generate; to beget; to hatch

  2. Breedverb

    to take care of in infancy, and through the age of youth; to bring up; to nurse and foster

  3. Breedverb

    to educate; to instruct; to form by education; to train; -- sometimes followed by up

  4. Breedverb

    to engender; to cause; to occasion; to originate; to produce; as, to breed a storm; to breed disease

  5. Breedverb

    to give birth to; to be the native place of; as, a pond breeds fish; a northern country breeds stout men

  6. Breedverb

    to raise, as any kind of stock

  7. Breedverb

    to produce or obtain by any natural process

  8. Breedverb

    to bear and nourish young; to reproduce or multiply itself; to be pregnant

  9. Breedverb

    to be formed in the parent or dam; to be generated, or to grow, as young before birth

  10. Breedverb

    to have birth; to be produced or multiplied

  11. Breedverb

    to raise a breed; to get progeny

  12. Breednoun

    a race or variety of men or other animals (or of plants), perpetuating its special or distinctive characteristics by inheritance

  13. Breednoun

    class; sort; kind; -- of men, things, or qualities

  14. Breednoun

    a number produced at once; a brood


  1. Breed

    A breed is a specific group of domestic animals or plants having homogeneous appearance, homogeneous behavior, and other characteristics that distinguish it from other animals or plants of the same species and that were arrived at through selective breeding. Despite the centrality of the idea of "breeds" to animal husbandry, no scientifically accepted definition of the term exists. A breed is therefore not an objective or biologically verifiable classification but is instead a term of art amongst groups of breeders who share a consensus around what qualities make some members of a given species members of a nameable subset. The term is distinguished from landrace, which refers to a naturally occurring regional variety of domestic animal through uncontrolled breeding. When bred together, animals of the same breed pass on these predictable traits to their offspring, and this ability—known as "breeding true"—is a requirement for a breed. Plant breeds are more commonly known as cultivars. The offspring produced as a result of breeding animals of one breed with other animals of another breed are known as crossbreeds or mixed breeds. Crosses between animal or plant variants above the level of breed/cultivar are referred to as hybrids.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Breed

    brēd, v.t. to generate or bring forth: to train or bring up: to cause or occasion.—v.i. to be with young: to produce offspring: to be produced or brought forth:—pa.t. and pa.p. bred.—n. that which is bred, progeny or offspring: kind or race.—ns. Breed′-bate (Shak.), one who is constantly breeding or producing debate or strife; Breed′er, one who breeds or brings up; Breed′ing, act of producing: education or manners.—Breeding in-and-in, pairing of similar forms: marrying always among near relations. [A.S. brédan, to cherish, keep warm; Ger. brüten, to hatch.]

British National Corpus

  1. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'breed' in Nouns Frequency: #1971

  2. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'breed' in Verbs Frequency: #802

Anagrams for breed »

  1. brede

  2. rebed

How to pronounce breed?

How to say breed in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of breed in Chaldean Numerology is: 9

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of breed in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7

Examples of breed in a Sentence

  1. Adam Kluger:

    I tend to think that I'm a special breed of agent because I don’t have any protection, i’m putting myself out there and trying to sell to two people instead of just one.

  2. Mats Wilander:

    Truth is, and I hate to say it, we are going to lose the greatest player of all time in terms of interest in a year or two when Roger stops, we have a new breed of men and women that are really exciting, great athletes, great attitude but they are missing out on a bit of the limelight while the likes of Federer and Rafa Nadal and Novak continue to play.

  3. Ernesto Molino:

    We Argentines know crisis, and it's the crises, of course, not the good times, that breed creativity.

  4. Staci Choate:

    Terriers in themselves are high energy, they’re very active, they’re people pleasers, they want to be with their family. That’s why we see a lot of trouble with Pit Bull Terriers because they are [such] a people pleasing breed, that they do whatever their people want them to do.

  5. William Shakespeare:

    How use doth breed a habit in a man.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for breed

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • ربى, تربيةArabic
  • порода, род, развъждам, отглеждам, произход, пораждамBulgarian
  • raça, criar, engendrarCatalan, Valencian
  • rasa, plemeno, šlechtitCzech
  • raceDanish
  • hervorrufen, Rasse, erzeugen, züchten, verursachen, Sorte, aufziehen, paaren, brütenGerman
  • ράτσαGreek
  • raso, brediEsperanto
  • variedad, raza, aparear, criar, cultivar, casta, cepa, procrear, engendrarSpanish
  • پرورش و اصلاح نژادPersian
  • astuttaa, lisääntyä, synnyttää, rotu, jalostaa, kasvattaa, paritellaFinnish
  • se reproduire, race, engendrer, éleverFrench
  • síolraigh, póraigh, síolrachIrish
  • gnè, seòrsaScottish Gaelic
  • नस्लHindi
  • nemz, szaporodik, tenyészt, fajtaHungarian
  • besar, berkembang biakIndonesian
  • edukarIdo
  • razza, riprodursi, allevareItalian
  • 育てる, 繁殖Japanese
  • ತಳಿKannada
  • 낳다, 가꾸다, 기르다, 품종, 계통, 치다, 거두다, 일으키다Korean
  • бак, порода, багууKyrgyz
  • educ tecum,Latin
  • whakaaiaiMāori
  • bakaMalay
  • variëteit, broeden, fokken, rasDutch
  • avleNorwegian
  • płodzić, hodować, gatunek, rasa, rozmnażać się, wychowywaćPolish
  • variedade, cruzar, criar, gerar, raça, procriar, cultivarPortuguese
  • rasăRomanian
  • разводить, развести, сорт, раса, племя, плодиться, размножаться, порода, родRussian
  • soj, pasmina, rasa, lozaSerbo-Croatian
  • plemeno, rasaSlovak
  • avla, föröka, rasSwedish
  • இனப்பெருக்கம்Tamil
  • జాతినిTelugu
  • สายพันธุ์Thai
  • doğurmakTurkish
  • породаUkrainian
  • نسلUrdu
  • giốngVietnamese
  • האָדעוועןYiddish
  • 品种Chinese

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    used of men; markedly masculine in appearance or manner
    • A. butch
    • B. equivalent
    • C. soft-witted
    • D. extroversive

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