Definition of bruin in US English:



  • A bear, especially in children's fables.

    • ‘Furthermore, an initial shot fired not to hit, but to frighten, may have sent the bruin on her way.’
    • ‘The way the story goes, a trespassing towheaded pre-teen barged into the rustic country cottage of a nuclear family of anthropomorphic bruins.’
    • ‘If that fails, however, I'd much rather tackle that bruin with a puny .45 than fight him off with a fly rod.’
    • ‘Ninety-nine percent of the time, if you are fortunate enough to have a close look at a bruin, you're going to feel exhilarated, not threatened.’
    • ‘But a few complaints were more serious in nature: six marauding bruins broke into houses this year to raid the cupboards, and three farmers reported livestock kills.’
    • ‘He interlaced the death of an actual bruin with an American storytelling tradition that used the moment of extermination to build and express cross-species empathy.’
    • ‘My theory behind this mixed load is that if noise-making and pepper spray (used with the off-hand) haven't solved the problem, then the bruin, cougar or coyote will probably only be a few feet away.’
    • ‘While the bruins do indeed lose bone mass during their hibernation, the researchers discovered that bone production remains constant and may even accelerate as the bears wake up and become active again.’
    • ‘It's also the round he relies on to prevent annoyed bruins from chewing up paying clients.’
    • ‘A couple of years ago, the town of Snowmass, Colorado, mandated bear-proof trash containers to discourage curious local bruins, says Colorado Division of Wildlife spokesman Todd Malmsbury.’
    • ‘When bumper crops abound, even bruins just emerging from hibernation will immediately seek out whitebark cone caches that survived the winter unscathed.’
    • ‘He treed the bruin with the aid of a greenhorn companion.’
    • ‘Crawling into a cave to hibernate, the bruins survive winters of hardship by going back into the uterine Earth.’


Late 15th century: from Dutch bruin (see brown); used as a name for the bear in the 13th-century fable Reynard the Fox.