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

  • adj. Inspiring or exciting: a breathtaking view; a breathtaking ride.
  • adj. Astonishing; astounding: breathtaking insensitivity.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. stunningly beautiful; amazing
  • adj. Very surprising or shocking; to such a degree as to cause astonishment.

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

  • adj. tending to cause suspension of regular breathing


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • On the series Valentine can be seen visiting Llangennith Beach on the Gower and Llansteffan Beach, south of Carmarthen, both of which he describes as "breathtaking".

    WalesOnline - Home

  • Instead, the eccentric hip-hop legend settled for taking in what he called the breathtaking views of a location he always dreamed of seeing.

    Tonawanda News Homepage

  • Most of all, the book traces in breathtaking detail FDR’s revolutionary efforts with his New Deal legislation to transform the American political economy in order to save it, his forcefuland cageyleadership before and during World War II, and his lasting legacy in creating the foundations of the postwar international order.

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  • Obama has engaged in breathtaking demogoguery of the insurance companies.

    The Volokh Conspiracy » Just Wondering

  • You can wonder and doubt whether or not that the world of books and papers that contain breathtaking physical ideas and mathematical beauty can really hold a candle to the world of a social life and deep interpersonal connection.

    The Most Beautiful Words I’ve Ever Read About Grad School… « Imaginary Potential

  • i have read your posts on this site and i can only say that your breathtaking is stupid. please stop at once.

    Think Progress » Bolton: ‘This is Put Up or Shut Up Time For Iran,’ Unilateral Military Action Is ‘On The Table’

  • In the recent retrospective of Nan Kempner’s wardrobe at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute, the late socialite’s closet was re-created in breathtaking detail — all 354 jackets and 362 sweaters — but her surprisingly undistinguished collection of handbags was relegated to a high shelf and mostly hidden.

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  • In ruling that intelligent design had no business being taught in public school science classes, Judge Jones referred to the "breathtaking inanity" of the Dover Area School Board.

    Michael Zimmerman, Ph.D.: The 'Breathtaking Inanity' Of Rick Santorum And Michele Bachmann

  • Last May, I wrote about the NSA's secret domestic spying program, the existence of which the Bush administration would just as soon have kept completely quiet, but couldn't: ...the President authorized the National Security Agency NSA to undertake what can only be described as a breathtaking and unprecedented operation involving domestic intelligence-gathering that targeted the telephone records of millions upon millions of unsuspecting American citizens.

    Lawsuit Against NSA: You Spied On Us And We Can Prove It

  • With this news just breaking, Hilary Benn appeared on Newsnight to defend Blair in what can only be described as a breathtaking performance.

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