brass

[[t]brɑ͟ːs, bræ̱s[/t]]
brasses
1) N-UNCOUNT Brass is a yellow-coloured metal made from copper and zinc. It is used especially for making ornaments and musical instruments.

The instrument is beautifully made in brass.

2) N-COUNT: usu the N in sing The brass is the section of an orchestra which consists of brass wind instruments such as trumpets and horns.

He once again raised his baton and brought in the brass.

3) N-COUNT Brasses are flat pieces of brass with writing or a picture cut into them, which are often found in churches.
See also brass rubbing
4) N-SING-COLL: also no det, oft with supp In the army or in other organizations, the brass are the people in the highest positions. [AM, INFORMAL]

The brass are reluctant to fraternise with the enlisted men.

(in BRIT, use top brass)
5) PHRASE: V inflects If you get down to brass tacks, you discuss the basic, most important facts of a situation.

Angola's ruling party was due to get down to brass tacks today with a debate on the party's record.


English dictionary. 2008.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Brass — Brass, n.; pl. {Brasses}. [OE. bras, bres, AS. br[ae]s; akin to Icel. bras cement, solder, brasa to harden by fire, and to E. braze, brazen. Cf. 1st & 2d {Braze}.] 1. An alloy (usually yellow) of copper and zinc, in variable proportion, but often …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • brass — [bra:s US bræs] n ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ 1¦(metal)¦ 2¦(music)¦ 3¦(decorations)¦ 4 get down to brass tacks 5¦(people with top jobs)¦ 6 it s brass monkeys/brass monkey weather 7¦(money)¦ ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ [: Old English; Origin: brAs] 1.) ¦(METAL)¦ …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • brass — [ bræs ] noun ** 1. ) uncount a shiny yellow metal that is used for making musical instruments and objects such as door handles. It is a mixture of COPPER and ZINC: a faucet made of brass doors with brass hinges a ) count a flat piece of brass… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • brass — ► NOUN 1) a yellow alloy of copper and zinc. 2) (also horse brass) a flat brass ornament for the harness of a draught horse. 3) Brit. a memorial consisting of a flat piece of inscribed brass in the wall or floor of a church. 4) brass wind… …   English terms dictionary

  • Brass — ist: die englische Bezeichnung für Messing eine gängige Bezeichnung für Blasmusik mit Blechblasinstrumenten aus Messing eine Stadt in Nigeria, siehe Brass (Nigeria) Brass ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Arnold Braß (1854–1915), deutscher …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • brass — [bras, bräs] n. pl. brasses [ME bras < OE bræs, brass, bronze] 1. a yellowish metal that is essentially an alloy of copper and zinc 2. things made of brass, as fittings, ornaments, or implements 3. [often with pl. v.] the brass instruments of… …   English World dictionary

  • brass — brass; brass·bound·er; brass·ie; brass·i·ly; brass·i·ness; ze·brass; brass·ey; steen·brass; …   English syllables

  • brass´i|ly — brass|y «BRAS ee, BRAHS », adjective, brass|i|er, brass|i|est, noun, plural brass|ies. –adj. 1. of or covered with brass. 2. like brass: » …   Useful english dictionary

  • brass|y — «BRAS ee, BRAHS », adjective, brass|i|er, brass|i|est, noun, plural brass|ies. –adj. 1. of or covered with brass. 2. like brass: » …   Useful english dictionary

  • brass — [brɑːs ǁ bræs] noun [uncountable] informal the top managers in an organization; = TOP BRASS: • Mr Sprey and the Air Force brass clashed continually over major elements of the plane s design. * * * brass UK US /brɑːs/ noun [U] ► WORK …   Financial and business terms

  • brass — (n.) O.E. bræs brass, bronze, originally in reference to an alloy of copper and tin (now bronze), later and in modern use an alloy of two parts copper, one part zinc. A mystery word, with no known cognates beyond English. Perhaps akin to Fr.… …   Etymology dictionary

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