[c]/breɪk / (say brayk)

verb (broke or, Archaic, brake, broken or, Archaic, broke, breaking)
verb (t)
1. to divide into parts violently; reduce to pieces or fragments.
2. to separate into parts or pieces: to break bread.
3. to detach from a larger object: to break a leaf from a plant.
4. to fracture a bone of: to break your arm.
5. to lacerate; wound: to break the skin.
6. to cause to stop functioning properly: I've broken the camera.
7. to separate into components: to break a difficult job into manageable steps.
8. to fail to observe; violate: to break a law; to break a promise.
9. to dissolve or annul: to break an engagement.
10. to discontinue abruptly; interrupt; suspend: to break the silence.
11. to destroy the regularity of: to break a rhythm.
12. to put an end to; overcome.
13. to interrupt the uniformity or sameness of: to break the monotony.
14. to destroy the unity, continuity, or arrangement of.
15. to exchange for a smaller amount or smaller units.
16. to make one's way through; penetrate.
17. to make one's way out of: to break jail.
18. to surpass; outdo: to break a record.
19. to disclose or divulge, with caution or delicacy.
20. to disable or destroy by or as by shattering or crushing.
21. to open the breech of (a gun) either for safety or for unloading.
22. to ruin financially, or make bankrupt.
23. to reduce in rank.
24. to impair or weaken in strength, spirit, force, or effect.
25. to be the first to publish (a news item).
26. to defeat the purpose of (a strike) as by hiring non-union labour.
27. to train to obedience; tame: *Breaking a horse is like gelding him; it makes him docile –david foster, 1981.
28. Cricket to strike (a wicket) so as to dislodge the bails.
29. Golf to bend (the wrists) on the back swing.
30. Electricity to render (a circuit) incomplete; stop the flow of (a current).
31. Music to play (a chord) as an arpeggio.
verb (i)
32. to become broken or separated into parts or fragments, especially suddenly and violently.
33. to stop functioning properly: the camera broke.
34. to happen: it broke just the way I wanted; things broke very nicely for him.
35. to free oneself or escape suddenly (away, from, etc.) as from restraint: he broke and ran.
36. to stop work, etc., especially temporarily: we'll break for lunch at 1.00 p.m.
37. (of a ball) to change direction on bouncing.
38. (of a sea swell) to develop into white crested waves, the water of which, unlike the water which carries an unbroken swell, moves forcibly forward; usually caused by the water becoming shallower, as over a reef, near the shore, etc.
39. (of a wave) to topple forward after developing a crest through the opposing pull of an undertow in shallow water.
40. (of a news item) to appear for the first time in a newspaper, on television, etc.
41. (of stock) to stampede: the cattle broke at night.
42. to force a way (in, through, out, etc.)
43. to burst (in, forth, from, etc.): a cry broke from her lips.
44. to come suddenly, as into notice.
45. to dawn, as the day.
46. (of a fish) to come to the surface.
47. to give way or fail as under strain.
48. (of the heart) to be crushed or overwhelmed, especially by grief.
49. (of stock-exchange prices) to drop quickly and considerably.
50. (of the voice) to vary between two registers, especially in emotion or during adolescence.
51. Music to change or go from one register to another, as a musical instrument.
52. Phonetics to undergo breaking.
53. Billiards to make a break (def. 78a).
54. Boxing to discontinue a clinch.
55. Rugby Football to disband, as a scrum or maul.
56. Cycling to suddenly outdistance the rest of the field.
57. (in a race) to start before the signal to do so has been given.
58. breakdance (def. 2).
59. a forcible disruption or separation of parts; a breaking; a fracture, rupture, or shattering.
60. an opening made by breaking; a gap.
61. an opportunity; chance.
62. a rush away from a place; an attempt to escape: a break for freedom.
63. an interruption of continuity; suspension, stoppage.
64. an abrupt or marked change, as in sound or direction.
65. a brief rest, as from work, especially a midmorning pause, usually of fifteen minutes, between school classes.
66. a short holiday: a three-day break.
67. a stampede of stock.
68. Surfing a section of water as over a reef, near the shore, etc., where the sea swell breaks: the beach break was about a metre high.
69. Wool a distinct weakness in one part of the wool staple caused by a temporary interference with the growth of the staple.
70. Prosody a pause or caesura.
71. Music
a. Jazz a solo passage, usually marked by improvisation.
b. Pop an instrumental passage in a song.
72. Music the point in the scale where the quality of voice of one register changes to that of another, as from chest to head.
73. Stock Exchange a sudden drop in prices.
74. Electricity an opening or discontinuity in a circuit.
75. Printing a wordbreak.
a. a series of successful shots, strokes, or the like, in a game.
b. Billiards the score made in such a series.
77. any continuous run, especially of good fortune.
78. Billiards
a. the shot that breaks or scatters the balls at the beginning of the game.
b. the right to the first shot.
79. a premature start in racing.
80. Cricket, etc. a change in the direction of a ball when it bounces, usually caused by a spinning motion imparted by the bowler.
81. Tenpin Bowling a failure to knock down all ten pins after bowling twice.
82. Harness Racing a change in the pace of a horse, from a trot or pace to a gallop: she pulled the horse into a break.
83. shooting brake (def. 2).
84. CB Radio access to a radio channel.
85. breakdance (def. 1).
86. break a leg,
a. Theatre (an exhortation to an actor about to perform on stage, attempting to disguise a wish that they might be successful because of a superstition that good wishes bring bad luck.) {Phrase Origin: ? a translation of a German expression, in itself a corruption of a Yiddish blessing}
b. (usually negative) to hurry excessively: well, don't break a leg getting there.
87. break and enter, Law to open or force one's way into (a dwelling, store, etc.).
88. break away,
a. to free oneself or escape suddenly, as from restraint.
b. (in racing) to start prematurely.
c. Football to elude defending players and run towards the opposing goal.
d. to move away from a crowd.
e. (of a sheep or cow) to run away from the flock or herd.
f. (of a cyclist) to leave the rest of a group behind.
g. to secede.
h. (sometimes followed by from) to remove oneself with effort from undesirable contact or influence.
89. break back,
a. Cricket (of a ball) to break (def. 37) towards the stumps.
b. Tennis to break service after having had one's own service broken in a previous game in the set.
90. break bulk,
a. to open a ship's hatch and discharge the first sling of cargo.
b. to open a fully enclosed container and unload the first part of the load.
91. break camp, to pack up tents and equipment and resume a march.
92. break down,
a. to take down or destroy by breaking.
b. to overcome.
c. to be overcome by emotion.
d. to analyse.
e. Timber Industry to cut (logs) into flitches; make the first cuts in (heavy logs).
f. to add water to (spirits, etc.), to reduce the alcoholic strength.
g. (of a person) to collapse physically or mentally.
h. to cease to function: the car broke down.
i. to be in a vehicle that ceases to function: I broke down on the way to work.
93. break even (or square), to neither win nor lose on a transaction.
94. break in,
a. to enter a house or the like forcibly, as an intruder: *The men in this case pursued the women to the house in which they were billeted and remained there for three days, making continual attempts to break in. –anne summers, 1975.
b. to adapt to one's convenience by use: to break in a new pair of shoes.
c. to accustom (a horse) to harness and use.
d. to train (a young person, especially an adolescent) to accept the responsibilities of life.
e. to cultivate (virgin land): to break in a new paddock.
f. (sometimes followed by on or upon) to interrupt: *I would not care to break in upon Mr Pilcher's prayers. –patrick white, 1976.
95. break into,
a. to interrupt.
b. to enter (a house or the like) forcibly.
c. to suddenly begin (an activity): she broke into laughter.
d. to open for consumption and use: to break into a packet of biscuits.
96. break it down, (an exclamation which is an appeal to someone to desist from behaviour which is annoying, embarrassing, upsetting, etc.)
97. break new ground, to venture into a new area of activity.
98. break of, to train (a person, animal, etc.) away from (a habit or practice).
99. break off,
a. to sever by breaking.
b. to put a sudden stop to; discontinue: to break off smoking.
c. to cease suddenly: the music broke off.
d. to leave off abruptly: *Two men were standing there, in conversation, and one broke off to ask me what I wanted. –harold lewis, 1973.
e. to become detached.
f. to dissolve or annul.
100. break one's duck, Cricket (of the person batting) to score one's first run in an innings.
101. break out,
a. to issue forth; arise: laughter broke out.
b. Pathology (of certain diseases) to appear in eruptions.
c. to produce for use or enjoyment, as for a special occasion: to break out the champagne.
d. (sometimes followed by of) to force one's way out; escape: to break out of prison.
e. Goldmining (of a particular field) to become the site of a gold rush: next the Palmerston broke out.
102. break out in, (of a person) to have a sudden appearance of (various eruptions on the skin): to break out in pimples.
103. break service (or serve){{}} (or someone's service){{}} (or someone's serve), Tennis to win a game when receiving the service.
104. break someone's way, to come about to someone's advantage: the market finally broke her way.
105. break step, Military to cease marching in step.
106. break up,
a. to separate; disband (especially of a school at end of term).
b. to dissolve and separate.
c. Colloquial to collapse with laughter.
d. Colloquial to cause to laugh uncontrollably; amuse greatly.
e. (of a personal relationship) to end: many marriages break up in the first year.
f. (sometimes followed by with) to discontinue a relationship: to break up with one's partner.
g. to put an end to; discontinue.
h. to cut up (fowl, etc.).
107. break wind, to expel flatulence.
108. give me a break, Colloquial (an exclamation indicating that a response, suggestion, etc., made by another is unreasonably foolish.)
109. give someone a break, Colloquial to give someone a fair chance: *Give the poor kid a break. –sumner locke elliott, 1981. {Phrase Origin: from an obsolete sense of break referring to an interruption in a street performer's act to allow the hat to be passed around by others. The term was taken up by the underworld community and by the 1870s was used to describe money collected by friends for the assistance of a felon.}
110. them's the breaks, Colloquial that is how life is.
{Middle English breke(n), Old English brecan}

Australian English dictionary. 2014.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Break — (br[=a]k), v. t. [imp. {broke} (br[=o]k), (Obs. {Brake}); p. p. {Broken} (br[=o] k n), (Obs. {Broke}); p. pr. & vb. n. {Breaking}.] [OE. breken, AS. brecan; akin to OS. brekan, D. breken, OHG. brehhan, G. brechen, Icel. braka to creak, Sw. braka …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Break — (br[=a]k), v. i. 1. To come apart or divide into two or more pieces, usually with suddenness and violence; to part; to burst asunder. [1913 Webster] 2. To open spontaneously, or by pressure from within, as a bubble, a tumor, a seed vessel, a bag …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • break — ► VERB (past broke; past part. broken) 1) separate into pieces as a result of a blow, shock, or strain. 2) make or become inoperative; stop working. 3) interrupt (a continuity, sequence, or course). 4) fail to observe (a law, regulation, or… …   English terms dictionary

  • break — vb Break, crack, burst, bust, snap, shatter, shiver are comparable as general terms meaning fundamentally to come apart or cause to come apart. Break basically implies the operation of a stress or strain that will cause a rupture, a fracture, a… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • break — [brāk] vt. broke, broken, breaking [ME breken < OE brecan < IE base * bhreg > BREACH, BREECH, Ger brechen, L frangere] 1. to cause to come apart by force; split or crack sharply into pieces; smash; burst 2. a) …   English World dictionary

  • break — / brāk/ vb broke / brōk/, bro·ken, / brō kən/, break·ing, / brā kiŋ/ vt 1 a: violate transgress break the law …   Law dictionary

  • break — [n1] fissure, opening breach, cleft, crack, discontinuity, disjunction, division, fracture, gap, gash, hole, rent, rift, rupture, schism, split, tear; concepts 230,757 Ant. association, attachment, binding, combination, fastening, juncture break… …   New thesaurus

  • Break — (br[=a]k), n. [See {Break}, v. t., and cf. {Brake} (the instrument), {Breach}, {Brack} a crack.] 1. An opening made by fracture or disruption. [1913 Webster] 2. An interruption of continuity; change of direction; as, a break in a wall; a break in …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • break-up — break ups also breakup 1) N COUNT: usu N of n, n N The break up of a marriage, relationship, or association is the act of it finishing or coming to an end because the people involved decide that it is not working successfully. Since the break up… …   English dictionary

  • break up — {v.} 1. To break into pieces. * /The workmen broke up the pavement to dig up the pipes under it./ * /River ice breaks up in the spring./ 2. {informal} To lose or destroy spirit or self control. Usually used in the passive. * /Mrs. Lawrence was… …   Dictionary of American idioms

  • break up — {v.} 1. To break into pieces. * /The workmen broke up the pavement to dig up the pipes under it./ * /River ice breaks up in the spring./ 2. {informal} To lose or destroy spirit or self control. Usually used in the passive. * /Mrs. Lawrence was… …   Dictionary of American idioms