any tree or shrub of the genus Betula, comprising species with a smooth, laminated outer bark and close-grained wood.
Compare birch family.
the wood itself.
a birch rod, or a bundle of birch twigs, used especially for whipping.
to beat or punish with or as if with a birch:
The young ruffians were birched soundly by their teacher.
Historical Examples

The Loom of Youth Alec Waugh
Deering of Deal Latta Griswold
The Laughing Mill and Other Stories Julian Hawthorne
The Secrets of a Savoyard Henry A. Lytton
The Channings Mrs. Henry Wood
Dead Souls Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol
Amusing Prose Chap Books Various
Chambers’s Twentieth Century Dictionary (part 2 of 4: E-M) Various

any betulaceous tree or shrub of the genus Betula, having thin peeling bark See also silver birch
the hard close-grained wood of any of these trees
the birch, a bundle of birch twigs or a birch rod used, esp formerly, for flogging offenders
of, relating to, or belonging to the birch
consisting or made of birch
(transitive) to flog with a birch


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