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Possibly inherited from Vulgar Latin *bragius, from Ancient Greek βράγος (brágos, marsh, shallows), possibly from Proto-Indo-European *bʰerH- (to dig, bore); compare Albanian bërrakë.

Or, inherited from Old Galician-Portuguese brejo, from Proto-Celtic *bracum (swamp), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰreg- (to break).



  • Hyphenation: bre‧jo



brejo m (plural brejos)

  1. marsh, swamp
    Synonyms: pântano, paul, breja; see also Thesaurus:pântano
    • 2023, Djalma do Nascimento Sousa, chapter XXIII, in Memórias do Sul do Maranhão, Maranhão, published 2023, page 523:
      Depois deste poço, sempre é seguido por um brejo com bastante pé de buriti [...]
      After this well, it's always followed by a swamp with lots of buriti trees [...]
  2. (Northeast Brazil) a usually fertile terrain where rivers are more or less permanent
  3. (Brazil, Maranhão) a low region with springs
  4. (Brazil, Bahia) a rice plantation
  5. (figuratively) a chilly and windy place

Derived terms



  • Beekes, Robert S. P. (2010) Etymological Dictionary of Greek (Leiden Indo-European Etymological Dictionary Series; 10), with the assistance of Lucien van Beek, Leiden, Boston: Brill, →ISBN