Definitions

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

  • noun The upper edge of a steep or vertical slope: synonym: border.
  • noun The margin of land bordering a body of water.
  • noun The point at which something is likely to begin; the verge.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The edge, margin, or border of a steep place, as of a precipice or the bank of a river; verge; hence, close proximity: as, “the precipice's brink,”
  • noun to be on the brink of ruin.
  • noun Synonyms See rim.

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

  • noun The edge, margin, or border of a steep place, as of a precipice; a bank or edge, as of a river or pit; a verge; a border. Also Fig.

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

  • noun The edge, margin, or border of a steep place, as of a precipice; a bank or edge, as of a river or pit; a verge; a border; as, the brink of a chasm. Also used figuratively.

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

  • noun the edge of a steep place
  • noun a region marking a boundary
  • noun the limit beyond which something happens or changes

Etymologies

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

[Middle English, probably of Scandinavian origin .]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English brinke, from Proto-Germanic *brenkaz (compare Dutch brink ‘grassland’, German dialect Brunkel, Icelandic brekka ‘slope’), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰren- ‘project’ (compare Tocharian B prenke ‘island’, Irish braine ‘prow’).

Examples

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