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a. Either of two milk-secreting, glandular organs on the chest of a woman; the female mammary gland.
b. A corresponding rudimentary gland in a human male, especially when enlarged by exposure to estrogen or appearing to be enlarged by overlying body fat.
a. The superior ventral surface of the human body, extending from the neck to the abdomen.
b. A corresponding part in other animals.
c. A cut of meat taken from this part of an animal, especially from poultry.
d. The part of a garment that covers the chest.
e. The seat of affection and emotion: "Griefs of mine own lie heavy in my breast" (Shakespeare).
3. Something likened to the human breast, as in being in round or broad: the breast of a hill; the breast of the sea.
4. The face of a mine or tunnel.
5. Sports Breaststroke.
tr.v. breast·ed, breast·ing, breasts
1. To go to the top of; ascend: "He breasted a rise and looked down. He was at the head of a small valley" (Ken Follett).
2. To move forward or advance through or across: breasted the current; breasted the crowd.
3. To confront or deal with resolutely: breasted a storm of criticism.

[Middle English brest, from Old English brēost.]
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. Bosom like a Spanish balcony —Colette
  2. Bosom like the prow of a ship —M. J. Farrell
  3. Bosoms … large, like mounds of earth on the banks of a dug-up canal —R. K. Narayan
  4. Bosoms like cheese-wheels —David Huddle
  5. Bosoms like vast, half-filled hot-water bottles —M. J. Farrell
  6. Bosoms set like two great prows of battleships —Brian Donleavy
  7. Breasts as large and round as a bald man’s head —James Crumley
  8. Breasts hard as stone, project like a bulwark —Erich Maria Remarque
  9. A breast divided into segments like a peeled orange, or a pair of thighs that converge into a single swollen knee —Kingsley Amis
  10. Breasts heaving like a flight deck —Rita Mae Brown
  11. Breasts … hung like water-filled balloons from her chest —Bernard Malamud
  12. Breasts lie flat on her ribs like soft purses —Rose Tremain
  13. Breasts, like a nursing mother’s —Katherine Anne Porter
  14. Breasts like a pair of piggies —Vladimir Nabokov
  15. Breasts like armaments —T. Coraghessan Boyle
  16. Breasts … like bread loaves hot from the oven —Francine du Plessix Gray
  17. Breasts like … clusters of the vine —The Holy Bible/Song of Solomon
  18. Breasts … like dried apples —Annette Sanford
  19. Breasts like dunes —John D. MacDonald
  20. Breasts … like empty purses except when they filled briefly and fed another child —H. E. Bates
  21. Breasts like giant cabbages —W. Somerset Maugham
  22. Breasts like overripe squash —Patricia Henley
  23. Breasts like pennants —Irwin Shaw
  24. Breasts like small hard apples —Francine du Plessix Gray
  25. Breasts like smooth and ivory-colored hills —Marguerite Young
  26. Breasts … sag from her chest like two plump gourds —Susan Yankowitz
  27. Breasts sagging like overripe fruit —George Garrett
  28. Breasts … shaped like crescent moons —Ira Wood
  29. Breasts swaying like party balloons —Jilly Cooper
  30. Breasts swelling … like rising bread —Marge Piercy
  31. Breasts that drop, big as barrels —Dylan Thomas
  32. Breasts were like long white grapes in the hot sun —D. H. Lawrence
  33. Breasts, which were like apples cut in half —Colette
  34. Breasts … whose fruits are dark as plums —C. J. Koch
  35. Bursts like creamy milk-fed veal —Susan Lois

    The character who thus pronounces and describes a woman’s breasts in a novel entitled Personals is a kosher butcher.

  36. Chest like a promontory —Daphne Merkin
  37. Cleavage deep as the jungle —T. Coraghessan Boyle
  38. Enormous breasts that seemed to rise up and nearly out of her gown with every deep breath, defying physical laws, like a half-finished bridge —William Brammer
  39. Full breasts soaring all over the place like billowing pennants in a strong wind —Joseph Heller
  40. Her bosom heaved like an opera singer’s —Ruth Prawer Jhabvala
  41. Her breasts are tiny and hang from her chest like a pair of prunes —Milan Kundera
  42. (An ample woman,) her breasts hung like calabashes inside her grey dress —Thomas Keneally
  43. Her breasts looked like two five-pound flour sacks from which some of the contents had spilled —Sue Grafton
  44. Her large heavy breasts seemed to lift like wings —James Crumley
  45. Her nipples preceded her like scouts —Yehuda Amichai
  46. Her small girlish breasts already sagged like little pockets on her white chest —Jonathan Valin
  47. His bared breast glistened soft and greasy as though he had sweated out his fat in his sleep —Joseph Conrad
  48. Jutting breasts like hills —Robinson Jeffers
  49. Little mounds had appeared like soft marshmallows through her sweater —Carol Ascher
  50. Long pointed breasts rearing like the muzzles of two Afghans —James Crumley
  51. The nipple [of mother nursing child] looked like the end of a Tootsie Roll —Bobbie Ann Mason
  52. Nipples … flat and wide as poker chips —Sue Miller
  53. Nipples large as cookies —Ira Wood
  54. Nipples … like buds of peonies —Amy Lowell
  55. Nipples like two dark eyes —David Michael Kaplan
  56. Nipples shaped like discs of milk chocolate —Ira Wood

    Wood’s novel, The Kitchen Man, brims with food-related images.

  57. Nipples … small as buttons —Miles Gibson
  58. Nipples standing out like two overgrown M&Ms —T. Glen Coughlin
  59. The profile of her body stood forth like the prow of a clipper ship —Calder Willingham
  60. She had fenders like a GMC truck —Loren D. Estleman
  61. They [breasts] were wide mounds growing like muscles across her chest —Will Weaver
  62. A woman without breasts is like a bed without pillows —Anon
Similes Dictionary, 1st Edition. © 1988 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
When the news was noised abroad, it was observed that many persons walked the streets with freer countenances and covered their breasts less carefully with their hands.
There, not more than forty or fifty miles from us, glittering like silver in the early rays of the morning sun, soared Sheba's Breasts; and stretching away for hundreds of miles on either side of them ran the great Suliman Berg.
Spit on the city of compressed souls and slender breasts, of pointed eyes and sticky fingers--
THERE grew a fragrant rose-tree where the brook flows, With two little tender buds, and one full rose; When the sun went down to his bed in the west, The little buds leaned on the rose-mother's breast, While the bright eyed stars their long watch kept, And the flowers of the valley in their green cradles slept; Then silently in odors they communed with each otber, The two little buds on the bosom of their mother.
She tenderly kissed me, She fondly caressed, And then I fell gently To sleep on her breast -- Deeply to sleep From the heaven of her breast.
"But I shall have to cut a hole in your breast, so I can put your heart in the right place.
And all the way Kala carried her little dead baby hugged closely to her breast.
Naught he found too lofty, none he saw too low-- Parbati beside him watched them come and go; Thought to cheat her husband, turning Shiv to jest-- Stole the little grasshopper and hid it in her breast. So she tricked him, Shiva the Preserver.
Perhaps the fact that Teeka sat there watching him aroused a desire to vanquish the ape-man before her eyes, for in the breast of every jungle male lurks a vast egotism which finds expression in the performance of deeds of derring-do before an audience of the opposite sex.
With his hands joined upon his breast, his face turned towards the window, bathed by the fresh air of night, which brought upon its wings the aroma of the flowers and the woods, Athos entered, never again to come out of it, into the contemplation of that paradise which the living never see.
The cudgel was swinging in the arc which ended upon my upturned face when a bolt of myriad-legged horror hurled itself through the doorway full upon the breast of my executioner.
After that they took his right hand, placed it on something, and told him to hold a pair of compasses to his left breast with the other hand and to repeat after someone who read aloud an oath of fidelity to the laws of the Order.