Share this entry

breakthrough Syllabification: break·through
Pronunciation: /ˈbrākˌTHro͞o/

Definition of breakthrough in English:


1A sudden, dramatic, and important discovery or development: a major breakthrough in DNA research
More example sentences
  • The secret to the Pool Putter's success are two key breakthroughs discovered by Swedish engineer Leif Sundberg.
  • The panels have been chosen to represent major breakthroughs achieved by the CSIR in scientific research.
  • Scientists at the University of York have made a major breakthrough in the fight against prostate cancer.
advance, development, step forward, success, improvement;
discovery, innovation, revolution;
1.1An instance of achieving success in a particular sphere or activity: her big breakthrough came on the stage when she won a Tony Award in 1958 [as modifier]: the band’s breakthrough album
More example sentences
  • It was a breakthrough series, setting trends for all comedy films to follow.
  • This breakthrough film fascinates on many levels.
  • Released in 1971, the year after Altman's breakthrough film, M * A * S * H, McCabe & Mrs. Miller remains one of the key American movies of the era.

Words that rhyme with breakthrough

aircrew • écru

Definition of breakthrough in:

Share this entry


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day innocuous
Pronunciation: ɪˈnɒkjʊəs
not harmful or offensive