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Definitions of break:

  • noun:   an escape from jail
    Example: "The breakout was carefully planned"
  • noun:   a sudden dash
    Example: "He made a break for the open door"
  • noun:   an act of delaying or interrupting the continuity
    Example: "It was presented without commercial breaks"
  • noun:   (tennis) a score consisting of winning a game when your opponent was serving
    Example: "He was up two breaks in the second set"
  • noun:   the opening shot that scatters the balls in billiards or pool
  • noun:   an unexpected piece of good luck
    Example: "He finally got his big break"
  • noun:   the occurrence of breaking
    Example: "The break in the dam threatened the valley"
  • noun:   any frame in which a bowler fails to make a strike or spare
    Example: "The break in the eighth frame cost him the match"
  • noun:   the act of breaking something
    Example: "The breakage was unavoidable"
  • noun:   some abrupt occurrence that interrupts
    Example: "There was a break in the action when a player was hurt"
  • noun:   breaking of hard tissue such as bone
    Example: "The break seems to have been caused by a fall"
  • noun:   a pause from doing something (as work)
    Example: "We took a 10-minute break"
  • noun:   a personal or social separation (as between opposing factions)
    Example: "They hoped to avoid a break in relations"
  • noun:   a time interval during which there is a temporary cessation of something
  • noun:   (geology) a crack in the earth's crust resulting from the displacement of one side with respect to the other
  • verb:   move away or escape suddenly
    Example: "Nobody can break out--this prison is high security"
  • verb:   change directions suddenly
  • verb:   invalidate by judicial action
  • verb:   of the male voice in puberty
    Example: "His voice is breaking--he should no longer sing in the choir"
  • verb:   render inoperable or ineffective
  • verb:   interrupt a continued activity
  • verb:   cause the failure or ruin of
    Example: "This play will either make or break the playwright"
  • verb:   happen or take place
    Example: "Things have been breaking pretty well for us in the past few months"
  • verb:   come forth or begin from a state of latency
  • verb:   give up
    Example: "Break cigarette smoking"
  • verb:   cause to give up a habit
  • verb:   vary or interrupt a uniformity or continuity
  • verb:   come to an end
  • verb:   become separated into pieces or fragments
  • verb:   destroy the integrity of; usually by force; cause to separate into pieces or fragments
  • verb:   happen
  • verb:   weaken or destroy in spirit or body
  • verb:   prevent completion
    Example: "Break off the negociations"
  • verb:   change suddenly from one tone quality or register to another
  • verb:   come into being
  • verb:   find the solution or key to
    Example: "Break the code"
  • verb:   find a flaw in
    Example: "Break an alibi"
  • verb:   undergo breaking
  • verb:   interrupt the flow of current in
    Example: "Break a circuit"
  • verb:   be released or become known; of news
  • verb:   diminish or discontinue abruptly
  • verb:   pierce or penetrate
  • verb:   become punctured or penetrated
  • verb:   break a piece from a whole
    Example: "Break a branch from a tree"
  • verb:   go to pieces
  • verb:   ruin completely
  • verb:   fall sharply
  • verb:   separate from a clinch, in boxing
  • verb:   make the opening shot that scatters the balls
  • verb:   destroy the completeness of a set of related items
    Example: "The book dealer would not break the set"
  • verb:   exchange for smaller units of money
    Example: "I had to break a $100 bill just to buy the candy"
  • verb:   force out or release suddenly and often violently something pent up
    Example: "Break into tears"
  • verb:   be broken in
    Example: "If the new teacher won't break, we'll add some stress"
  • verb:   curl over and fall apart in surf or foam, of waves
  • verb:   emerge from the surface of a body of water
  • verb:   scatter or part
  • verb:   make a rupture in the ranks of the enemy or one's own by quitting or fleeing
  • verb:   enter someone's property in an unauthorized manner, usually with the intent to steal or commit a violent act
  • verb:   terminate
    Example: "Break a lucky streak"
  • verb:   surpass in excellence
    Example: "Break a record"
  • verb:   fracture a bone of
  • verb:   make submissive, obedient, or useful
    Example: "The horse was tough to break"
  • verb:   reduce to bankruptcy
    Example: "My daughter's fancy wedding is going to break me!"
  • verb:   fail to agree with; be in violation of; as of rules or patterns
  • verb:   become fractured; break or crack on the surface only
  • verb:   cease an action temporarily
    Example: "Let's break for lunch"
  • verb:   do a break dance
    Example: "Kids were break-dancing at the street corner"
  • verb:   assign to a lower position; reduce in rank
  • verb:   discontinue an association or relation; go different ways
  • verb:   lessen in force or effect
    Example: "Break a fall"
  • verb:   break down, literally or metaphorically
  • verb:   act in disregard of laws and rules
    Example: "Break a law"
  • verb:   stop operating or functioning
  • verb:   make known to the public information that was previously known only to a few people or that was meant to be kept a secret


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Search for break at other dictionaries: OneLook, Oxford, American Heritage, Merriam-Webster

See break used in context: 184 Shakespeare works, 4 quotations, 1 Mother Goose rhyme, 103 Bible passages, 204 definitions


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