Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A brassiere.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun same as brassiere.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun slang friend
  • noun a brassiere
  • noun physics One of the two vectors in the standard notation for describing quantum states in quantum mechanics, the other being the ket.

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

  • noun an undergarment worn by women to support their breasts

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Representing a different pronunciation of bro, meaning brother

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Shortened from brassiere.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From bracket

Examples

Comments

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  • Why is "bra" singular and "panties" plural?

    November 27, 2007

  • Women have a lot to answer for.

    November 27, 2007

  • Bra makes sense, as it's short for brassiere. But why are pants and scissors plural?

    And for that matter, why does politics SOUND plural, even though it isn't?

    November 27, 2007

  • Pants: Two legs.

    Scissors: Two blades.

    Politics: One is quite enough, thankyouverymuch.

    November 27, 2007

  • Pants: two legs, two cuffs, one pair, one garment.

    Scissors: two blades, two points, two fingerholes, one pair, one tool.

    By that argument you could say bra: two arm straps, two cups, one garment, which doesn't make sense at all. "I need to buy a pair of bra" is just dumb, and "...a pair of bras" means two of the garments, not two cups.

    Which brings us back to: why not buy a pant, or use a scissor?

    Politics, however, is just weird. I understand it makes strange bedfellows as well.

    November 27, 2007

  • I had an Indian friend who used pant and scissor in the singular. "I bought a new pant today." "Will you be passing me the scissor." Perhaps such usages are all the buzz in Bangalore. But he didn't wear a bra so I remain perplexed.

    November 27, 2007

  • Because English is weird, that's why.

    November 27, 2007

  • Oh! So that's it! Thanks reesetee! ;)

    Also, and perhaps paradoxically, I find stuff like the J. Crew catalog saying "The Pant" to be very pretentious.

    November 27, 2007

  • I interpret it as panties go over both legs, where as the bra is worn over the chest.

    November 27, 2007

  • I know what you mean, c_b. I always imagine someone trying to put on a pair of one-legged trousers and hopelessly hopping around a room.

    November 27, 2007