Break - definition, pronunciation, transcription

Amer.  |breɪk|  American pronunciation of the word break
Brit.  |breɪk|  British pronunciation of the word break
irregular verb:  p.t. — broke  p.p. — broken
- some abrupt occurrence that interrupts an ongoing activity (syn: interruption)
- an unexpected piece of good luck
- (geology) a crack in the earth's crust resulting from the displacement of one side with respect to the other (syn: fault, fracture, shift)
- a personal or social separation (as between opposing factions) (syn: breach, rift, rupture, severance)
- a pause from doing something (as work) (syn: recess, respite)
show more (11)
- terminate (syn: interrupt)
- become separated into pieces or fragments (syn: come apart, separate, split up)
- render inoperable or ineffective
- ruin completely (syn: bust)
- destroy the integrity of; usually by force; cause to separate into pieces or fragments
show more (54)


She broke the cup when she dropped it on the floor.

Break the chocolate bar into pieces so that everyone can have some.

It is easiest to break a chain at its weakest link.

A chain will break at its weakest link.

The fall broke his arm.

His arm broke in three places when he fell.

A bruise forms when a blood vessel breaks under the skin.

The tank is reinforced to prevent breaks and leaks.

There was a break in the hedge.

We waited for a break in the traffic.

The fields extend for miles without a break.

We chatted during a break in the game.

All employees are entitled to two breaks during the workday.

We've been working all day without a break.

He fell through the window, breaking the glass.

Phrasal verbs

break away  — move away or escape suddenly
break down  — make ineffective
break in  — enter someone's (virtual or real) property in an unauthorized manner, usually with the intent to steal or commit a violent act
break off  — interrupt before its natural or planned end
break out  — start abruptly
break through  — pass through (a barrier)
break up  — to cause to separate and go in different directions

Word forms

I/you/we/they: break
he/she/it: breaks
present participle: breaking
past tense: broke
past participle: broken
singular: break
plural: breaks
See also:  WebsterWiktionaryLongman