Translation of "break" - English-Spanish dictionary


verb uk /breɪk/ us /breɪk/ past tense broke, past participle broken

A2 to separate into two or more pieces, or to make something separate into two or more pieces

They had to break a window to get in.

A2 to damage a bone in your body

She broke her leg in the accident.

A2 to stop working or to make something stop working

Who broke the TV?

B1 to stop an activity and have a short rest

hacer una pausa
Let’s break for five minutes.

to not do something that you should do

I don’t like to break promises.

to come to an end or make something come to an end

romper, interrumpir
Eventually someone spoke, breaking the silence.
break the law

to do something that the law says you must not do

incumplir la ley
noun uk /breɪk/ us /breɪk/

A2 the act of stopping an activity for a short time, usually to rest

a coffee break

B1 a holiday or period of time away from work or school

a weekend break in Paris
spring break

a place where something has broken

The x-ray shows a bad break in her arm.

(Translation of “break” from the Cambridge English-Spanish Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)


verb /breik/ (past tense broke /brouk/, past participle brəken /ˈbroukən/)

to divide into two or more parts (by force)

romper, quebrar

(usually with off/away) to separate (a part) from the whole (by force)

She broke a piece off the bar of chocolate.

to make or become unusable

Someone’s broken the photocopier.

to go against, or not act according to (the law etc)

quebrantar, infringir; cancelar
He broke the law by driving over the speed limit.

to do better than (a sporting etc record)

She broke the world high-jump record.

to interrupt

She broke her journey in London.

to put an end to

He broke the silence.

to make or become known

anunciar, comunicar, hacer público
They gently broke the news of his death to his wife.

(of a boy’s voice) to fall in pitch

mudar, cambiar
His voice broke.

to soften the effect of (a fall, the force of the wind etc)

Luckily, the thick grass broke his fall.

to begin

romper, estallar, desatarse
The storm broke before they reached shelter.
breakable adjective

(opposite unbreakable) likely to break

breakable goods.
breakage /-kidʒ/ noun

the act of breaking, or its result(s).

Guests also undertake to pay for breakages they may be responsible for during the period of their stay.
breaker noun

a (large) wave which breaks on rocks or the beach

ola grande, cachón
They could hear the sound of breakers crashing on the shore.
breakdown noun

(often nervous breakdown) a mental collapse

colapso, crisis nerviosa
The stress of the job caused him to suffer a nervous breakdown.

a mechanical failure causing a stop

The car has had another breakdown.
breakneck adjective

(usually of speed) dangerous

He drove at breakneck speed.
breakthrough noun

a sudden solution of a problem leading to further advances, especially in science

avance, descubrimiento, invento decisivo
The discovery of the structure of DNA was a major scientific breakthrough.
breakwater noun

a barrier to break the force of the waves

rompeolas, espigón
The breakwater was destroyed in a severe storm.
break away phrasal verb

to escape from control

The dog broke away from its owner.
break down phrasal verb

to use force on (a door etc) to cause it to open

derribar, echar abajo
The police broke down the door.

to stop working properly

estropearse, dejar de funcionar
My car has broken down.

to fail

The talks have broken down.

to be overcome with emotion

She broke down and wept.
break in phrasal verb ( break into)

to enter (a house etc) by force or unexpectedly

allanar una morada
Thieves broke into the museum at night and stole the painting.

to interrupt (someone’s conversation etc)

cortar, interrumpir
I was reluctant to break in on their conversation.
break loose

to escape from control

The dog has broken loose.
break off phrasal verb

to stop

She broke off in the middle of a sentence.
break out phrasal verb

to appear or happen suddenly

estallar, desatarse
War has broken out.

to escape (from prison, restrictions etc)

evadirse, escapar(se)
A prisoner has broken out (noun breakout).
break out in phrasal verb

to (suddenly) become covered in a rash, in sweat etc

salir, quedar cubierto de
I’m allergic to strawberries. They make me break out in a rash.
break the ice

to overcome the first shyness etc

romper el hielo
Let’s break the ice by inviting our new neighbours/neighbors for a meal.
break up phrasal verb

to divide, separate or break into pieces

romper, hacer pedazos, desmenuzar
He broke up the old wooden furniture and burnt it.

to finish or end

terminar(se), acabar(se), cerrar(se)
The meeting broke up at 4.40.

to end a relationship

Romper una Relación
John and Mary broke up last week.
make a break for it

to make an (attempt to) escape

tratar de escapar/evadirse
When the guard was not looking, the prisoners made a break for it.

(Translation of “break” from the PASSWORD English-Spanish Dictionary © 2014 K Dictionaries Ltd)