ETYM Old Eng. brik, French brique; of German origin; cf. AS. brice a breaking, fragment, Prov. Eng. brique piece, brique de pain, equiv. to AS. hlâfes brice, from the root of Eng. break. Related to Break.
1. A good fellow; helpful and trustworthy.
2. Rectangular block of clay baked by the sun or in a kiln; used as a building or paving material.
Common building material, rectangular in shape, made of clay that has been fired in a kiln. Bricks are made by kneading a mixture of crushed clay and other materials into a stiff mud and extruding it into a ribbon. The ribbon is cut into individual bricks, which are fired at a temperature of up to about 1,000şC/1,800şF. Bricks may alternatively be pressed into shape in molds.
Refractory bricks used to line furnaces are made from heat-resistant materials such as silica and dolomite. They must withstand operating temperatures of 1,500şC/2,700şF or more.
Sun-dried bricks of mud reinforced with straw were first used in Mesopotamia some 8,000 years ago. Similar mud bricks, called adobe, are still used today in Mexico and other areas where the climate is warm and dry.