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English definition of “brief”

brief

adjective uk   /briːf/ us  

brief adjective (SHORT IN TIME)

B1 lasting only a short time or containing few words: His acceptance speech was mercifully brief. I had a brief look at her report before the meeting. It'll only be a brief visit because we really haven't much time. After a brief spell/stint in the army, he started working as a teacher. The company issued a brief statement about yesterday's accident. used to express how quickly time goes past: For a few brief weeks we were very happy.

brief adjective (SHORT IN LENGTH)

(of clothes) very short: She was wearing a rather brief skirt, as I recall.

brief

verb uk   /briːf/ us  
[T] to give someone detailed instructions or information: We had already been briefed about/on what the job would entail.
Compare
brief against/in favour of sb/sth [I] to make information about someone or something public, with the intention of criticizing/praising him, her, or it: On several occasions government officials briefed against their own ministers.

brief

noun uk   /briːf/ us  

brief noun (SHORT FORM)

in brief B2 If something is said in brief, it is said in a very short form, with very few details: "So you didn't enjoy the party then." "In brief, no."

brief noun (UNDERWEAR)

briefs [plural] a piece of underwear worn by men or women, covering the area between the waist and the tops of the legs: cotton briefs

brief noun (INSTRUCTIONS)

[C] UK a set of instructions or information: [+ to infinitive] It was my brief to make sure that the facts were set down accurately. [C] specialized law a document or set of documents containing the details about a court case

brief noun (LAWYER)

UK informal a lawyer who will speak for someone in a court of law : My brief advised me to plead guilty.
(Definition of brief from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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