• To separate into two or more pieces, to fracture or crack, by a process that cannot easily be reversed for reassembly.
  • To divide (something, often money) into smaller units.
  • To cause (a person or animal) to lose spirit or will; to crush the spirits of.
  • To be crushed, or overwhelmed with sorrow or grief.
  • To interrupt; to destroy the continuity of; to dissolve or terminate.
  • To ruin financially.
  • To violate, to not adhere to.
  • To pass the most dangerous part of the illness; to go down, in terms of temperature.
  • To end.
  • To begin; to end.
  • To arrive.
  • To render (a game) unchallenging by altering its rules or exploiting loopholes or weaknesses in them in a way that gives a player an unfair advantage.
  • To stop, or to cause to stop, functioning properly or altogether.
  • To cause (a barrier) to no longer bar.
  • To destroy the arrangement of; to throw into disorder; to pierce.
  • To collapse into surf, after arriving in shallow water. Image:A storm at Pors-Loubous.jpg|right|thumb|196px|A wave breaking.
  • To burst forth; to make its way; to come into view.
  • To interrupt or cease one's work or occupation temporarily.
  • To interrupt (a fall) by inserting something so that the falling object does not (immediately) hit something else beneath.
  • To disclose or make known an item of news, a band, etc.
  • To become audible suddenly.
  • To change a steady state abruptly.
  • To suddenly become.
  • Of a male voice, to become deeper at puberty.
  • Of a voice, to alter in type due to emotion or strain: in men generally to go up, in women sometimes to go down; to crack.
  • To surpass or do better than (a specific number), to do better than (a record), setting a new record.
  • To demote, to reduce the military rank of.
  • To end (a connection), to disconnect.
  • To demulsify.
  • To counter-attack.
  • To lay open, as a purpose; to disclose, divulge, or communicate.
  • To become weakened in constitution or faculties; to lose health or strength.
  • To fail in business; to become bankrupt.
  • To destroy the strength, firmness, or consistency of.
  • To destroy the official character and standing of; to cashier; to dismiss.
  • To make an abrupt or sudden change; to change the gait.
  • To fall out; to terminate friendship.
  • To terminate the execution of a program before normal completion.
  • To suspend the execution of a program during debugging so that the state of the program can be investigated.
  • To cause, or allow the occurrence of, a line break.



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  • From Middle English breken, from Old English brecan ("to break"), from Proto-West Germanic *brekan, from Proto-Germanic *brekaną ("to break"), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰreg- ("to break"). The word is a bray.
  • Cognates of Germanic origin include Scots brek ("to break"), West Frisian brekke ("to break"), Dutch breken ("to break"), Low German breken ("to break"), German brechen ("to break"), French broyer ("to crush, grind"), Gothic 𐌱𐍂𐌹𐌺𐌰𐌽 ("to break, destroy"), Norwegian brek ("desire, yearning").
  • Also cognate with Albanian brishtë ("fragile"), Latin frangō ("break, break up, shatter"), whence English fracture and other terms – fragile, frail, fraction, and fragment.
  • and see also breakdancing.

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