Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A basket for serving bread.
  • n. A geographic region serving as a principal source of grain supply.
  • n. Slang The stomach.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A basket used for storing or carrying bread.
  • n. A region where grain is grown.
  • n. The stomach.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The stomach.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A basket for holding or carrying bread; specifically, a tray, generally oval in shape, used for holding bread at table.
  • n. The stomach.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. an enlarged and muscular saclike organ of the alimentary canal; the principal organ of digestion
  • n. a geographic region serving as the principal source of grain
  • n. a basket for serving bread

Etymologies

From bread +‎ basket. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • When in this condition, Dominick suddenly delivered first a left and then a right hander into what is sometimes called the breadbasket, and stretched his adversary on the sand.

    The Island Queen

  • During British colonial times, the Irrawaddy Delta was called the breadbasket of Southeast Asia.

    News

  • With a territory larger than France, one that is home to a third of the world's most fertile soil, Ukraine has often been referred to as the "breadbasket of Europe."

    Ukraine's Future Is With the European Union

  • How will we feed ourselves adequately if our breadbasket is a desert?

    Weather beaten

  • Land reform, Africanization policies and brutal repression have reduced a country that was once described as the "breadbasket of Africa" to a basket case.

    Will Travers: The "Wisdom" of Bob Parsons

  • Once known as the breadbasket of Afghanistan, the Arghandab has become a killing field.

    Stryker soldiers say commanders failed them by defying Gen McChrystal's orders

  • Malnutrition is now rampant in a country was once known as the breadbasket of Africa and political violence is widespread in a country that once held so much promise in a region facing so many challenges.

    The failures of Mandela and the Vatican to speak out against Mugabe

  • Zimbabwe, on the other hand, used to be referred to as the breadbasket of Africa but is now hosting a starving population due largely to governmental mismanagement of the economy.

    Archive 2008-04-01

  • The United States is known as the breadbasket of the world.

    CNN Transcript Apr 23, 2008

  • Zimbabwe, once dubbed the breadbasket of southern Africa, now has to import food to feed its population of nearly 12 million people.

    ANC Daily News Briefing

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Comments

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  • It doesn't list the Midwest as the Breadbasket to the World, which is another usage I've heard.

    But then, my brain doesn't seem to work anymore, so what do I know.

    August 17, 2009

  • Here's OED on the word:

    "slang. The stomach.
    1753 FOOTE Englishm. Paris I. (1763) 15 Made the Soupe~maigre rumble in his Bread-basket. 1763 C. JOHNSTON Reverie I. 135 Hitting him a plump in the bread-basket. 1803 BRISTED Pedest. Tour I. 46 Our landlady, who was standing..with her mouth wide open, and her hands locked together..resting on her prominent breadbasket. 1850 KINGSLEY Alt. Locke xxxiii. (D.) ‘What do you think o' that now in a policeman's bread-basket?’"

    The two other definitions listed are the literal ("A basket for holding bread, or in which bread is handed round.") and slang for a type of bomb (A large bomb containing smaller bombs; esp. in MOLOTOV bread-basket.).

    August 17, 2009

  • In this instance, here on Wordie, it sure resembles a dictionary because it offers definitions, and I think that's how most people think of it--again, just here on Wordie.

    I've never heard it used as a synonym for stomach either. Hm.

    August 17, 2009

  • Again, WordNet is NOT a dictionary. It seems to be saying this is a synonym for stomach, which is reasonable.

    August 17, 2009

  • WeirdNet is...well, weird. Every dictionary I've checked says it's the stomach or abdomen--and that's how I've always heard it used.

    August 14, 2009

  • well, WeirdNet corroborates your ravings, so there goes another lascivious metaphor

    August 14, 2009

  • Anatomically I map breadbasket to the lower stomach. Is my aim set too high?

    August 14, 2009

  • in the breadbasket, eh? this is one for the penis lists
    also, gruesome news

    August 14, 2009

  • "In what once was the breadbasket of civilization, Iraqi agriculture, ignored by the occupiers, is withering and the country is desertifying at a frightening pace under the pressure of a several-year-old drought."
    - Tom Engelhardt, Biking Out of Iraq, tomdispatch.com, 13 August 2009.

    August 14, 2009

  • The son of commerce, aghast at these sounds of melancholy import, reeled two steps backward, just as if some one had given him a blow in the breadbasket.

    - Lesage, The Adventures of Gil Blas of Santillane, tr. Smollett, bk 6 ch. 1

    September 20, 2008