break (

     n 1: some abrupt occurrence that interrupts; "the telephone is an
          annoying interruption"; "there was a break in the action
          when a player was hurt" [syn: interruption]
     2: an unexpected piece of good luck; "he finally got his big
        break" [syn: good luck, happy chance]
     3: (geology) a crack in the earth's crust resulting from the
        displacement of one side with respect to the other; "they
        built it right over a geological fault" [syn: fault, {geological
        fault}, shift, fracture]
     4: a personal or social separation (as between opposing
        factions); "they hoped to avoid a break in relations"
        [syn: rupture, breach, severance, rift, {falling
     5: a pause from doing something (as work); "we took a 10-minute
        break"; "he took time out to recuperate" [syn: respite,
        recess, time out]
     6: the act of breaking something; "the breakage was
        unavoidable" [syn: breakage, breaking]
     7: a time interval during which there is a temporary cessation
        of something [syn: pause, intermission, interruption,
     8: breaking of hard tissue such as bone; "it was a nasty
        fracture"; "the break seems to have been caused by a fall"
        [syn: fracture]
     9: the occurrence of breaking; "the break in the dam threatened
        the valley"
     10: the opening shot that scatters the balls in billiards or
     11: (tennis) a score consisting of winning a game when your
         opponent was serving; "he was up two breaks in the second
         set" [syn: break of serve]
     12: an act of delaying or interrupting the continuity; "it was
         presented without commercial breaks" [syn: interruption,
          disruption, gap]
     13: a sudden dash; "he made a break for the open door"
     14: any frame in which a bowler fails to make a strike or spare;
         "the break in the eighth frame cost him the match" [syn:
         open frame]
     15: an escape from jail; "the breakout was carefully planned"
         [syn: breakout, jailbreak, gaolbreak, prisonbreak,
     v 1: end prematurely; "She interrupted her pregnancy"; "break a
          lucky streak" [syn: interrupt]
     2: become separated into pieces or fragments; "The figurine
        broke"; "The freshly baked loaf fell apart" [syn: separate,
         split up, fall apart, come apart]
     3: destroy the integrity of; usually by force; cause to
        separate into pieces or fragments; "He broke the glass
        plate"; "She broke the match"
     4: render inoperable or ineffective; "You broke the alarm clock
        when you took it apart!"
     5: ruin completely; "He busted my radio!" [syn: bust] [ant: repair]
     6: act in disregard of laws and rules; "offend all laws of
        humanity"; "violate the basic laws or human civilization";
        "break a law" [syn: transgress, offend, infract, violate,
         go against, breach]
     7: move away or escape suddenly; "The horses broke from the
        stable"; "Three inmates broke jail" [syn: break out, {break
     8: scatter or part; "The clouds broke after the heavy downpour"
     9: force out or release suddenly and often violently something
        pent up; "break into tears"; "erupt in anger" [syn: burst,
     10: prevent completion; "stop the project"; "break the silence"
         [syn: break off, discontinue, stop]
     11: enter someone's property in an unauthorized manner, usually
         with the intent to steal or commit a violent act;
         "Someone broke in while I was on vacation"; "They broke
         into my car and stole my radio!" [syn: break in]
     12: make submissive, obedient, or useful, as of wild animals or
         new items: "The horse was tough to break"; used
         metaphorically for people [syn: break in]
     13: fail to agree with; be in violation of; as of rules or
         patterns; "He violated the agreement to stay away from
         his ex-wife"; "You are breaking the law!" [syn: violate,
          go against] [ant: conform to]
     14: surpass in excellence; "She bettered her own record"; "break
         a record" [syn: better]
     15: make known to the public information that was previously
         known only to a few people or that was meant to be kept a
         secret; "The auction house would not disclose the price
         at which the van Gogh had sold"; "The actress won't
         reveal how old she is"; "bring out the truth"; "he broke
         the news to her" [syn: disclose, let on, bring out,
          reveal, discover, expose, declare, divulge, impart,
          give away, let out]
     16: come into being; "light broke over the horizon"; "Voices
         broke in the air"
     17: stop operating or functioning; "The engine finally went";
         "The car died on the road"; "The bus we travelled in
         broke down on the way to town"; "The coffee maker broke";
         "The engine failed on the way to town"; "her eyesight
         went after the accident" [syn: fail, go bad, {give
         way}, die, give out, conk out, go, break down]
     18: interrupt a continued activity; "She had broken with the
         traditional patterns" [syn: break away]
     19: make a rupture in the ranks of the enemy or one's own by
         quitting or fleeing (military usage); "The ranks broke"
     20: curl over and fall apart in surf or foam, of waves; "The
         surf broke"
     21: lessen in force or effect; "soften a shock"; "break a fall"
         [syn: dampen, damp, soften, weaken]
     22: be broken in; "If the new teacher won't break, we'll add
         some stress"
     23: come to an end; "The heat wave finally broke yesterday"
     24: vary or interrupt a uniformity or continuity; "The flat
         plain was broken by sharply mesas"
     25: cause to give up a habit; "She finally broke herself of
         smoking cigarettes"
     26: give up: "break cigarette smoking"
     27: come forth or begin from a state of latency; "The first
         winter storm broke over New York"
     28: happen or take place; "Things have been breaking pretty well
         for us in the past few months" (informal)
     29: cause the failure or ruin of; "His peccadilloes finally
         broke his marriage"; "This play will either make or break
         the playwright" [ant: make]
     30: invalidate by judicial action; "The will was broken"
     31: stop or interrupt; "He broke the engagement"; "We had to
         break our plans for a trip to China"
     32: divide into pieces, as by bending or cutting; "break the
         loaf of bread"; "break the crackers"
     33: discontinue an association or relation; go different ways;
         "The business partners broke over a tax question"; "The
         couple separated after 25 years of marriage"; "My friend
         and I split up" [syn: separate, part, split up, split,
          break up]
     34: assign to a lower position; reduce in rank; "She was demoted
         because she always speaks up" [syn: demote, bump, relegate,
          kick downstairs] [ant: promote]
     35: reduce to bankruptcy; "My daughter's fancy wedding is going
         to break me!" [syn: bankrupt, ruin]
     36: change directions suddenly
     37: emerge from the surface, as of fish in water; "The whales
     38: break down, literally or metaphorically; "The wall
         collapsed"; "The business collapsed"; "The dam broke";
         "The roof collapsed"; "The wall gave in"; "The roof
         finally gave under the weight of the ice" [syn: collapse,
          fall in, cave in, give, give way, founder]
     39: do a break dance; "Kids were break-dancing at the street
         corner" [syn: break dance, break-dance]
     40: exchange for smaller units of money; "I had to break a $100
         bill just to buy the candy"
     41: destroy the completeness of a set of related items; "The
         book dealer would not break the set" [syn: break up]
     42: make the opening shot that scatters the balls, in billiards
         or pool
     43: separate from a clinch, in boxing; "The referee broke the
     44: go to pieces; "The lawn mower finally broke"; "The gears
         wore out"; "The old chair finally fell apart completely"
         [syn: wear, wear out, bust, fall apart]
     45: break a piece from a whole; "break a branch from a tree"
         [syn: break off, snap off]
     46: pierce the surface of; "The fish broke the water"
     47: become punctured or penetrated: "The skin broke"
     48: pierce or penetrate; "The blade broke her skin"
     49: be released or become known; of news; "News of her death
         broke in the morning" [syn: get out, get around]
     50: cease an action temporarily; "We pause for station
         identification"; "let's break for lunch" [syn: pause, intermit]
     51: interrupt the flow of current in; "break a circuit"
     52: undergo breaking; "The simple vowels broke in many Germanic
     53: find a flaw in: "break an alibi"
     54: find the solution or key to; "break the code"
     55: change suddenly from one tone quality or register to
         another; "Her voice broke to a whisper when she started
         to talk about her children"
     56: stop and wait, as if awaiting further instructions or
         developments; "Hold on a moment!"; "We broke at noon"
         [syn: hold on, stop]
     57: happen, as of an event; "Report the news as it develops";
         "These political movements recrudesce from time to time"
         [syn: recrudesce, develop]
     58: become fractured; break or crack on the surface only; "The
         glass cracked when it was heated" [syn: crack, check]
     59: of the male voice in puberty; "his voice is breaking--he
         should no longer sing in the choir"
     60: fall sharply; "stock prices broke"
     61: fracture a bone of: "I broke my foot while playing hockey"
         [syn: fracture]
     62: diminish or discontinue abruptly; "The patient's fever broke
         last night"
     63: weaken or destroy in spirit or body; "For a hero loves the
         world till it breaks him"--Yeats