from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- adj. Likely to break, snap, or crack, as when subjected to pressure: brittle bones.
- adj. Easily damaged or disrupted; fragile: a brittle friendship. See Synonyms at fragile.
- adj. Difficult to deal with; snappish: a brittle disposition.
- adj. Lacking warmth of feeling; cold: a reputation for being brittle and aloof.
- adj. Brilliantly sharp, as in percussive sound.
- adj. Perishable.
- adj. Fleeting; transitory.
- n. A confection of caramelized sugar to which nuts are added: walnut brittle.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- adj. Inflexible, liable to break or snap easily under stress or pressure.
- adj. Not physically tough or tenacious; apt to break or crumble when bending.
- adj. Said of rocks and minerals with a conchoidal fracture; capable of being knapped or flaked.
- adj. Emotionally fragile, easily offended.
- n. A confection of caramelized sugar and nuts.
- n. Anything resembling this confection, such as flapjack, a cereal bar, etc.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- adj. Easily broken; apt to break; fragile; not tough or tenacious.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- 1. Fickle; changeable.
- Breaking easily and suddenly with a comparatively smooth fracture, as glass; fragile; not tough or tenacious.
- Figuratively, easily destroyed; perishable; fleeting.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. caramelized sugar cooled in thin sheets
- adj. having little elasticity; hence easily cracked or fractured or snapped
- adj. lacking warmth and generosity of spirit
- adj. (of metal or glass) not annealed and consequently easily cracked or fractured
Middle English britel, probably from Old English *brytel, from bryttian, to shatter.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English britel, brutel, brotel ("brittle"), from Old English *brytel, *bryttol ("brittle, fragile", literally "prone to or tending to break"), equivalent to brit + -le. More at brit. (Wiktionary)