definition of bracket by The Free Dictionary





a. A simple rigid structure in the shape of an L, one arm of which is fixed to a vertical surface, the other projecting horizontally to support a shelf or other weight.

b. A small shelf or shelves supported by such structures.

2. Architecture A decorative or weight-bearing structural unit, two sides of which form a right angle with one arm flush against a wall and the other flush beneath a projecting surface, such as eaves or a bay window.

3. A wall-anchored fixture for gas or electricity.


a. A square bracket.

b. An angle bracket.

c. Mathematics See brace.

5. Chiefly British One of a pair of parentheses.

6. A classification or grouping, especially within a sequence of numbers or grades, as a category of incomes sharing the same tax rate.

7. A treelike diagram showing the matchups between competitors in different rounds of a tournament.


a. The distance between two impacting shells, the first aimed beyond a target and the second aimed short of it, used to determine the range for artillery fire.

b. The shells fired in such a manner.

tr.v. brack·et·ed, brack·et·ing, brack·ets

1. To furnish or support with a bracket or brackets.

2. To place within or as if within brackets.

3. To classify or group together.

4. To include or exclude by establishing specific boundaries.

5. To fire beyond and short of (a target) in order to determine artillery range.

[Possibly French braguette, codpiece, diminutive of brague, breeches, from Old Provençal braga, from Latin brācae, from Gaulish brāca, leg covering.]

American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.




1. (Furniture) an L-shaped or other support fixed to a wall to hold a shelf, etc

2. (Building) one or more wall shelves carried on brackets

3. (Architecture) architect a support projecting from the side of a wall or other structure. See also corbel, ancon, console2

4. (Printing, Lithography & Bookbinding) Also called: square bracket either of a pair of characters, [ ], used to enclose a section of writing or printing to separate it from the main text

6. a group or category falling within or between certain defined limits: the lower income bracket.

7. (General Physics) the distance between two preliminary shots of artillery fire in range-finding

8. (Skiing) a skating figure consisting of two arcs meeting at a point, tracing the shape ⋎

vb (tr) , -kets, -keting or -keted

9. (Furniture) to fix or support by means of a bracket or brackets

10. (Printing, Lithography & Bookbinding) to put (written or printed matter) in brackets, esp as being irrelevant, spurious, or bearing a separate relationship of some kind to the rest of the text

11. (Printing, Lithography & Bookbinding) to couple or join (two lines of text, etc) with a brace

12. (often foll by with) to group or class together: to bracket Marx with the philosophers.

13. (Military) to adjust (artillery fire) until the target is hit

[C16: from Old French braguette codpiece, diminutive of bragues breeches, from Old Provençal braga, from Latin brāca breeches]

Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈbræk ɪt)

1. a supporting piece, often L– or scroll-shaped, projecting from a wall or the like to bear the weight of a shelf, cornice, etc., or to reinforce the angle between two members.

2. a shelf or shelves so supported.

3. a wall fixture for holding a lamp, clock, telephone, etc.

4. Also called square bracket. one of two marks, [or], used in writing or printing to enclose parenthetical matter, interpolations, etc.
5. Math.

a. brackets, parentheses of various forms indicating that the enclosed quantity is to be treated as a unit.

6. a class, division, or grouping, as of persons in relation to their income or age.

7. a projecting fixture for gas or electricity.

8. gun range or elevation producing both shorts and overs on a target.


9. to furnish with or support by a bracket or brackets.

10. to place within brackets.

11. to associate, mention, or class together: The problems were bracketed together.

12. to place (gunshots) both beyond and short of a target.

13. to photograph (additional shots) at exposure levels above and below the estimated correct exposure.

[1570–80; earlier also brag(g)et (in architecture)]

Random House Kernerman Webster’s College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.

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