1. The young of certain animals, especially a group of young birds hatched at one time and cared for together.
2. The children in one family.
v. brood·ed, brood·ing, broods
a. To focus the attention on a subject persistently and moodily; worry: brooded about his future; brooded over the insult for several days.
b. To be depressed: All he seemed to do was sit and brood.
a. To sit on or hatch eggs.
b. To protect developing eggs or young.
3. To hover envelopingly; hang: Mist brooded over the moor.
1. To think about (something) persistently or moodily: brooded that her work might come to nothing.
a. To sit on or hatch (eggs).
b. To protect (developing eggs or young).
Kept for breeding: a brood hen.
[Middle English, from Old English brōd; see bhreu- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
Synonyms: brood, dwell, fret1, mope, worry
These verbs mean to turn something over in the mind moodily and at length: brooding about his decline in popularity; dwelled on her defeat; fretted over the loss of his job; moping about his illness; worrying about the unpaid bills.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.