Date: 1200-1300
Language: Old French
Origin: branche, from Late Latin branca 'animal's foot'


1 noun
branch1 S1 W2 [countable]

of a tree

HBP a part of a tree that grows out from the trunk (=main stem) and that has leaves, fruit, or smaller branches growing from it [↪ limb]:
After the storm, the ground was littered with twigs and branches.
The topmost branches were full of birds.

of a business/shop/company etc

BB a local business, shop etc that is part of a larger business etc:
The bank has branches all over the country.
a branch office in Boston
She now works in our Denver branch.
Where's their nearest branch?
They're planning to open a branch in St. Louis next year.
Have you met our branch manager, Mr. Carlson?

of government

SSO a part of a government or other organization that deals with one particular part of its work [↪ department]:
All branches of government are having to cut costs.
the executive/judicial/legislative branch (=the three main parts of the US government)

of a subject

one part of a large subject of study or knowledge [↪ field]

of a family

SSF a group of members of a family who all have the same ancestors [↪ side]:
the wealthy South American branch of the family

of a river/road etc

a smaller less important part of a river, road, or railway that leads away from the larger more important part of it:
The rail company may have to close the branch line to Uckfield.
parts of a tree: trunk, branch, leaf, blossom, roots, bark, twig

a large area of trees: forest, rainforest, jungle

a small area of trees: wood/woods, thicket British English, copse British English

types of tree: evergreen, deciduous, conifer, fruit tree, hardwood tree

wood from trees: timber, lumber, firewood

See also

Dictionary results for "branch"
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