There are 2 translations of break in Spanish:


Pronunciation: /breɪk/

vt (past tense of/pasado de broke past participle of/participio pasado de, broken)

  • 1 [window/plate/rope] romper*; [twig/stick] partir, romper*, quebrar* (Latin America/América Latina) I've broken my pencil se me ha roto la punta del lápiz they broke a hole in the fence abrieron una brecha en la valla she broke the chocolate into four pieces partió el chocolate en cuatro trozos he broke his wrist playing rugby se rompió la muñeca jugando al rugby I broke a tooth/my nail se me rompió or partió un diente/la uña to break the back of sth hacer* la peor parte de algo I think we've broken the back of the job creo que ya tenemos hecho lo peor or la peor parte del trabajo
  • 4 (put an end to) [deadlock/impasse] salir* de; [habit] dejar; [drug ring] desarticular the Romans could not break their power los romanos no pudieron quebrantar su poder or no pudieron abatirlos
    More example sentences
    • Really wanting to break this bad habit is the first step to stopping.
    • The Canadian Cancer Society is urging smokers trying to quit to plan out how they are going to break their habit.
    • We would have to break old habits that perhaps were once useful, but don't serve their purpose anymore.
  • 5 5.1 (ruin) [person/company] arruinar a 5.2 (crush) [person] destrozar*, deshacer* heart 2 2 spirit1 3 will2 1 2 5.3 (demote) rebajar de grado, degradar
    More example sentences
    • They know that this could break the movement and we are afraid that it will work.
    • The bourgeoisie are agreed that the only solution is a dictatorship that crushes and breaks the workers' movement.
    • Government indifference and racist violence did not break the movement - in fact it radicalised it.
  • 6 (impart)to break sth (to sb) it was Sue who had to break the news to him le tocó a Sue darle la noticia they broke it to her gently se lo dijeron con mucho tacto
  • 7 (exceed) to break the sound barrier romper* or atravesar* la barrera del sonido
  • 8 8.1 (interrupt) [circuit/beam] cortar; [fast/silence] romper* 8.2 (split up, divide) [set/collection] deshacer*; [word] separar, dividir
    More example sentences
    • Traders who break the law by selling to children risk a £5,000 fine and six months imprisonment.
    • ‘Many doctors did not realise they were breaking the law by failing to seek the consent of relatives,’ he reported.
    • I observe how society keeps breaking the rules.
    8.3 (disrupt, upset) [pattern/continuity/monotony] romper*
    More example sentences
    • Everyone has a part to play in breaking this vicious cycle.
    • We have to break this vicious cycle between drug dependency and crime.
    • They must start to break their sequence of drawn games and start winning consistently if they are to retain their title.
    More example sentences
    • ‘Melissa,’ said Matthew breaking the silence and speaking for the first time since the fight had started.
    • She felt it was her job to break the silence between the two.
    • A father of two has broken his silence after keeping his sighting of a ghost 15 years ago at Woodville Halls Theatre a fearful secret.
    More example sentences
    • The newspapers reported that some passengers were breaking their journey at Earl's Court just to ride the escalator.
    • He has a house in Burgundy, about halfway between Tuscany and England, and it was agreed to break the journey there.
    • I broke my journey several times.
    More example sentences
    • By bouncing, the reed breaks an electrical circuit.
    • If either voltage or current is too big you could break the circuit.
    • A switch works by breaking the circuit, which stops the current.
  • 9 (breach, pierce) [soil] roturar I haven't broken the skin no me he abierto la piel, no me he rasguñado the submarine broke the surface of the water el submarino afloró a la superficie
  • 10 10.1 (get into) [safe] forzar* we broke the toolbox open abrimos la caja de herramientas forzándola 10.2 (escape from) (American English/inglés norteamericano) [jail] escaparse or fugarse* de 10.3 (decipher) [code] descifrar
    More example sentences
    • We have a large exhibit on World War II cipher machines and the machines that broke the enemy's codes.
    • When all the analyses were ready, the code was broken.
    • Then you have to spend time breaking the code and making your own key, which only lets you hotwire the vehicle.
    More example sentences
    • The maid broke the safe and stole money and jewellery.
    • They broke the safe in the Accounts Section and made away with the day's receipts.
    • If a burglar breaks the safe and steals the guns, I won't be held responsible for their criminal use because I did what I reasonably could to secure them.
  • 11 (change) cambiar can anyone break this $50 bill? ¿alguien me puede cambiar este billete de 50?, ¿alguien tiene cambio de 50?
    More example sentences
    • The hot spell had broken and now the weather was bearable again.
    • The heatwave broke and it was gorgeous running weather this morning.
    • The hot weather has definitely broken and it's jumpers before sunset, but only just before.
  • 12 (open) [shotgun/revolver] abrir*
    More example sentences
    • Right now, we've broken two bubble machines and have to buy a third one.
    • However, in the ensuing minutes there was an argument, during which the sewing machine got broken.
    • Someone broke the machine by jamming pencils in to it.
  • 13 (tame) [horse] domar
    More example sentences
    • When I look at her I just think that at some point her spirit was broken and then, well, this is what became of her.
    • Anne's spirit could not be broken.
    • She was going to prove he hadn't broken her spirit.

vi (past tense of/pasado de broke past participle of/participio pasado de, broken)

  • 1 1.1 [window/plate] romperse*; [rope/shoelace] romperse*; [twig/stick] partirse, romperse*, quebrarse* (Latin America/América Latina) my watch broke se me rompió el reloj her tooth/nail broke se le rompió or partió el diente/la uña it broke into several pieces se hizo pedazos, se rompió en varios pedazos it breaks into squares se parte en cuadrados 1.2 (separate) the clouds are breaking se está despejando a splinter group which broke from the party un grupo disidente que se escindió del partido free1 1 3 , 1.3 [Sport/Deporte] [boxers/fighters] separarse
    More example sentences
    • The ref was not between the fighters but he was instructing them to break.
    • He possibly could have cautioned him for holding and hitting as well, or he could have simply ordered them to break.
    • He said the first damaging blow came after the referee had told them to break and stop punching.
    More example sentences
    • He broke from the halfway line but held onto the ball too long with support on hand.
    • Six riders broke from a lead group of 15 and worked well together to maintain a healthy advantage going into the run.
    • This inspirational player broke round the blind side and was stopped just short of the try line.
    More example sentences
    • Will there emerge a spinner who breaks the ball so sharply that he needs no fielders on one side of the wicket?
    • This is done by twisting the wrist at the moment of delivery so that the ball breaks when it strikes with the pitch.
    • How much the ball breaks will often depend on the kind of pitch it is.
    More example sentences
    • From a Korean free-kick on the right, the ball breaks to Lee on the edge of the box.
    • The ball breaks to Owen on the left of the Argentinian box.
    • The ball broke among a swarm of backs and forwards.
    More example sentences
    • The cup broke under the strain.
    • His brows creased as he tried to break a piece of chocolate and he smiled when he broke it off.
    • The crew survived, but the aircraft exploded when its payload of munitions blew up breaking the windows of many local houses in the blast.
  • 2 (give in) [resistance] desmoronarse, venirse* abajo she broke under constant interrogation no resistió el constante interrogatorio the soldiers broke and ran los soldados rompieron filas y echaron a correr
    More example sentences
    • Her control broke and she hit him hard across the face.
    • The words died on her tongue, and all of her well-trained control broke.
    • Once in his room, Tony's fragile control broke, tears quickly blinding him.
  • 3 3.1 (begin) [storm/crisis] estallar; [day] romper*, apuntar, despuntar 3.2 (change) [weather] cambiar his voice is breaking le está cambiando or mudando la voz his voice broke (with emotion) se le entrecortó la voz 3.3 (become known) [story] hacerse* público; [scandal] estallar, hacerse* público
    More example sentences
    • He is said to have been regularly in tears since news of the scandal broke.
    • Since news of the scandal broke, the company has been forced to fire two of its executives and to demand the resignation of its chairman.
    • A federal investigator was on campus within 48 hours after news broke about the scandal.
    More example sentences
    • A mild thunderstorm has just broken out over west London, minutes after I got home.
    • On the way to the airport, a colossal thunderstorm broke.
    • A huge thunderstorm broke over St. George's early this morning.
    More example sentences
    • When day broke, the summer dawn could not penetrate the leaden gloom above the city.
    • Dawn was breaking as Marie rose from her first restful night's sleep in two weeks.
    • Dawn was a few hours away but when the day broke he knew his cover wouldn't last for long.
  • 4 (strike) [wave/surf] romper* the waves were breaking against the sea wall las olas rompían contra el dique
    More example sentences
    • Even in calm seas, the waves breaking over a reef are dangerous.
    • Turning his face towards the sea, he watched the low waves breaking on the sea wall.
    • His pace was brisk and he did not seem to appreciate the music of the sea waves breaking against the parapet.
  • 5 (adjourn) parar, hacer* una pausa to break for lunch/dinner parar para almorzar/cenar
  • 7 (move, shift) trasladarse the action then breaks to Budapest entonces la acción se traslada a Budapest
  • 8 (happen) (American English/inglés norteamericano) [colloquial/familiar] things are breaking well for me at the moment me están saliendo bien las cosas en este momento even2 2
  • 9 (in snooker, pool) abrir* el juego
    More example sentences
    • In each rack, you break, spot anything that went in, and take cueball in hand to begin the frame.
    • Ronnie O'Sullivan breaks to get the final underway but the opening frame proves a scrappy affair lasting half-an-hour.
    • He breaks and sits down without looking where the balls have spread.

Phrasal verbs

break away

verb + adverb/verbo + adverbio
1.1 (become free) to break away (from sth/sb) [piece] desprenderse (de algo) the boat broke away from its moorings el barco se soltó de las amarras she tried to break away from him trató de soltarse to break away from traditional methods apartarse de los métodos tradicionales he broke away from the pack [Sport/Deporte] se adelantó al pelotón, dejó atrás al pelotón 1.2 (secede, leave) to break away (from sth) [faction/region] escindirse or separarse (de algo)

break down

verb + adverb/verbo + adverbio 1.1 (stop functioning) [vehicle/machine] estropearse, averiarse*, descomponerse* (Latin America/América Latina) , quedarse en pana (Chile) , quedarse varado (Colombia) ; [system] fallar, venirse* abajo 1.2 (become injured) [colloquial/familiar] [sportsman] lesionarse 1.3 (fail) [talks/negotiations] fracasar his health broke down perdió la salud, se enfermó (Latin America/América Latina) 1.4 (lose composure) perder* el control he broke down and cried perdió el control y se echó a llorar 1.5 (divide into components) the total breaks down as follows el total está compuesto or puede desglosarse de la siguiente manera the device breaks down into sections el dispositivo es desarmable or desmontable 1.1verb + object + adverb, verb + adverb + object/verbo + complemento + adverbio, verbo + adverbio + complemento 2.1 [door/fence/barrier] echar abajo, derribar 2.2 (overcome) [shyness] sobreponerse* a 2.3 (divide up) [expenditure] desglosar; [sentence] descomponer* the process can be broken down into three very simple steps el proceso puede dividirse en tres pasos muy sencillos 2.4 (dismantle) [weapon/machine] desmontar, desarmar 2.5 [Chemistry/Química] [substance] descomponer*

break in

verb + adverb/verbo + adverbio 1.1 (force entry) [burglar/intruder] entrar, meterse (para robar etc) 1.2 [Military/Militar] penetrar en las defensas enemigas 1.3 (interrupt) interrumpirto break in on sth/sb I don't mean to break in on your conversation, but … no es que quiera meterme en or interrumpir su conversación, pero … sorry to break in on you like this perdonen que interrumpa 1.1verb + object + adverb, verb + adverb + object/verbo + complemento + adverbio, verbo + adverbio + complemento 2.1 (train) [horse] domar 2.2 [shoes/boots] ablandar, domar [humorous/humorístico] 2.3 (smash down) [door] echar abajo, derribar

break into

verb + preposition + object/verbo + preposición + complemento
1.1 (force entry) [building/grounds] entrar en, meterse en (para robar etc) our house was broken into nos entraron a robar, nos entraron ladrones 1.2 (gain entry in) [market/business] entrar or introducirse* en 1.3 (start on) [banknote] cambiar we broke into a bottle of port I'd been saving for Christmas abrimos una botella de oporto que tenía guardada para Navidad they had to break into their savings tuvieron que echar mano de sus ahorros 1.4 (encroach upon) it breaks into your spare time te quita tiempo libre 1.1 (begin) to break into a run echarse a correr to break into applause romper* or prorrumpir en aplausos to break into song ponerse* a cantar

break off

verb + object + adverb, verb + adverb + object/verbo + complemento + adverbio, verbo + adverbio + complemento 1.1 (detach) partir she broke off a piece of chocolate and gave it to him partió un trozo de chocolate y se lo dio 1.2 (end, stop) [engagement/diplomatic relations] romper* the president broke off his harangue el presidente interrumpió su arenga 1.1verb + adverb/verbo + adverbio 2.1 (snap off, come free) [piece of ice] desprenderse the handle broke off se le rompió or salió el asa 2.2 (stop talking) parar (de hablar), detenerse*, callarse she broke off in mid-sentence paró or se detuvo or se calló en la mitad de la frase

break out

verb + adverb/verbo + adverbio
1.1 (start) [war/epidemic/rioting] estallar 1.2 (appear) a rash broke out all over his face le salió un sarpullido en la cara beads of sweat broke out on her forehead le aparecieron gotas de sudor en la frente 1.3 (develop)to break out (in sth) he broke out in spots le salieron granos he broke out in a rash le salió un sarpullido to break out in a sweat empezar* a sudar the mere thought makes me break out in a cold sweat de solo pensarlo me da un sudor frío chocolate makes me break out (American English/inglés norteamericano) el chocolate me hace salir granos 1.1 (escape) [prisoner] escaparse, fugarse* to break out of a vicious circle salir* de or romper* un círculo vicioso they are eager to break out of their isolation están ansiosos por salir de su aislamiento

break through

verb + adverb/verbo + adverbio 1.1 (penetrate) [Military/Militar] penetrar en las defensas enemigas it was late before the sun broke through ya era tarde cuando salió el sol 1.2 (overcome major obstacle) at last we have broken through por fin hemos abierto (el) camino 1.1verb + preposition + object/verbo + preposición + complemento 2.1 (penetrate) [barrier/police cordon] atravesar*, romper* enemy forces broke through our defenses las fuerzas enemigas penetraron en nuestras defensas the sun broke through the clouds el sol se abrió paso entre las nubes 2.2 (overcome) I never managed to break through his reserve no logré que abandonara su reserva, no logré atravesar la barrera de su reserva

break up

verb + object + adverb, verb + adverb + object/verbo + complemento + adverbio, verbo + adverbio + complemento 1.1 [ship] desguazar* 1.2 (divide) [land/estate] dividir; [sentence] descomponer* break it up into four pieces divídelo or rómpelo en cuatro pedazos it helps break up the long mornings ayuda a que las mañanas no parezcan tan largas 1.3 (disperse) [demonstration] disolver* he broke up the fight between the boys separó a los niños que se estaban peleando come on, break it up! ¡vamos, basta ya! 1.4 (wreck, ruin) [home] deshacer* he felt responsible for breaking up their marriage se sentía responsable de su separación or del fracaso de su matrimonio 1.5 (disband) [team/group] desintegrar; [gang] desarticular 1.1verb + adverb/verbo + adverbio 2.1 [lovers/band] separarse their partnership broke up se separaron, dejaron de ser socios their marriage broke up se separaron, su matrimonio fracasó to break up with sb romper* or terminar con algn, tronar* con algn (Mexico/México) [colloquial/familiar] 2.2 [meeting/party] terminar; [crowd] dispersarse 2.3 (British English/inglés británico) [Education/Educación] we break up on the 21st las clases terminan el 21, las vacaciones empiezan el 22 when do you break up for Christmas? ¿cuándo empiezan las vacaciones de Navidad? 2.4 (break) romperse*, deshacerse* it broke up into tiny pieces se deshizo, se hizo añicos

break with

verb + preposition + object/verbo + preposición + complemento
1.1 [lover] romper* or terminar or (Mexico/México) [colloquial/familiar] tronar* con 1.2 [tradition] romper* con

Definition of break in:

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Word of the day moto
motorcycle …
Cultural fact of the day

The variety of catalán spoken in the Balearic Islands is called mallorquín. Some people regard it as a separate language from Catalan, which enjoys official status, but it is not officially recognized as such.

There are 2 translations of break in Spanish:



  • 1 1.1 (intermission) [Radio] [Television/Televisión] pausa (feminine) (comercial); [Theater/Teatro] intervalo (m), entreacto (m), intermedio (m) 1.2 (rest period) descanso (masculine); (at school) (British English/inglés británico) recreo (masculine) let's take a break tomémonos un descanso, paremos para descansar, hagamos una pausa we have a coffee break at 11 a las 11 paramos para tomar un café we worked without a break trabajamos sin parar or descansar
    More example sentences
    • And I really find that I put so much into it when I am painting that I have to take a break from it.
    • Taking a break from signing autographs, he seemed pleased with the way things had gone.
    • Students come here to eat, drink and take a break from school work.
    More example sentences
    • A moment later, the break bell rang.
    • Infant teachers who read it aloud in class were begged to continue when the bell rang for break.
    • Just as she began to mull over this new development, the bell rang for first break.
    1.3 (holiday, vacation) vacaciones (feminine plural) Christmas/summer break vacaciones de Navidad/verano
    More example sentences
    • While the number of Irish holidaymakers enjoying short breaks or full-week stays in the region was up, there was a drop-off in visitors from abroad.
    • I know that people travel from far and wide to enjoy short breaks and long holidays in our beautiful and historic city.
    • People are taking shorter holidays so city breaks are more popular.
    1.4 (change, respite) cambio (masculine) a welcome break un cambio refrescantebreak from sth I need a break from all this necesito descansar de todo esto (a holiday) necesito un cambio de aires give me a break! [colloquial/familiar] ¡déjame en paz!, ¡no me embromes! (Latin America/América Latina) [colloquial/familiar]
    More example sentences
    • The weather remained gloomy, with small breaks of sunshine.
    • After a week of waiting, there was a break in the weather.
    • Everywhere, the streets were filled with people, enjoying — at last — a break in the rain.
    More example sentences
    • In particular, he had to decide how to sequence the stories and ads on any given page, and when to put in line breaks.
    • How many page breaks can exist in a chapter?
    • He has made a fairly close, but not exact, approximation of page breaks, and preserved the numbering system fairly well.
    More example sentences
    • I picked up on the urgency in her voice, detecting emotional breaks.
    • There was a break in her voice as if she were going to burst out crying.
    • There was a break in his voice when he bade farewell to the reporters.
    1.5 (in transmission) interrupción (f), corte (m)
  • 2 2.1 (gap) interrupción (feminine) 2.2 (in circuit) ruptura (f), corte (m)
    More example sentences
    • A dead light-bulb is a break in the circuit, so that will also stop the current.
    • A switch is a break in the circuit that stops the electrons from flowing.
    • The break in the electric circuit had not been closed by pressure on the trip wire.
    More example sentences
    • Towards the western end of the ramparts there is an obvious break where a path leads through rocky portals to gain a grassy bealach.
    • Eventually there came a break in the cloud below and I spotted a reservoir which I thought I recognized from a previous flight.
    • On the opposite shore, I could make out a small railway bridge through a break in the trees.
  • 3 (fracture) fractura (f), rotura (m)
    More example sentences
    • For instance, if the break is clean and not frayed, he knows the frame has been knocked off the wall.
    • The bird had a fractured leg where breaks commonly occur in leg trap injuries.
    • In severe breaks, the broken bone may be poking through the skin.
  • 4 (chance, opportunity) [colloquial/familiar] oportunidad (feminine) he never got a decent break nunca se le presentó una buena oportunidad she's still looking for a break todavía está esperando que le cambie la suerte
    More example sentences
    • So why is it that some people seem to live charmed lives, full of lucky breaks and serendipitous chance encounters, while others experience one disaster after another?
    • Billions were sold and its success led to his big break.
    • But he has not taken advantage of this great opportunity, which could easily have been his big break.
  • 5 (separation, rift) ruptura (feminine) a break between the superpowers una ruptura (de relaciones) entre las superpotencias to make a clean break cortar por lo sano he made a break with his past life rompió or cortó con su pasado a break with tradition una ruptura con la tradición
    More example sentences
    • This represented a break with 1900 years of complete Christian consensus.
    • In a break with tradition, the Welsh Rugby Union has decided to make tickets for Six Nations matches available to the general public via their internet site.
    • We may need to make a break with the past and with past evidence.
  • 6 6.1 (sudden move) he made a break for cover/the door corrió a refugiarse/hacia la puerta 6.2 (breakaway) contraataque (masculine)
    More example sentences
    • In the first half he made several breaks to launch English attacks.
    • A single striker was aided by breaks from the wide players whenever they dared.
    • They combined as early as the third minute, a break by the scrum half putting Dixon through a gap to score.
  • 7 (escape) fuga (f), evasión (f) [formal]
    More example sentences
    • He said it was possible that weapons used in the prison break could have been introduced to the property through the gaping fence.
    • When local residents expressed concern after the prison break, the company simply shrugged it off.
    • Up to this point, two-thirds of the way in, the focus of the film was the actual prison break.
  • 8 (in snooker, pool) tacada (f), serie (f)
    More example sentences
    • After scoring a break of 118 in the opening frame yesterday, he lost the next on black.
    • Equally, rather than widen pockets and make it easier for players to shoot consistently higher breaks, snooker's governing body have actually done the opposite.
    • He managed to knock in two century breaks - and a 62 for good measure - and was still outscored by his opponent.
  • 9 (beginning) [literary/literario] at (the) break of day al rayar el alba [literary/literario], al despuntar el día
  • 10 (solo) solo (masculine)
    More example sentences
    • She is a fine pianist, straddling jazz, pop and classical styles, and the instrumental breaks on her debut album are solid.
    • The song, with the addition of a long instrumental solo break, drove the lyrical quality of the song to the heart.
    • Tracks on the album tend to feature brief lyric verses interspersed with longer instrumental breaks.
  • 11 (in tennis) ruptura (f), quiebre (m) (before noun/delante del nombre) break point punto (masculine) de ruptura
    More example sentences
    • He is a model of calmness on court in the third set and secures the crucial break of serve in game seven
    • The 22-year-old crawled back to 3-4 with a service break in the seventh game.
    • The final set was decided by a single break of serve in the ninth game, achieved with a spectacular running forehand down the line.

Definition of break in:

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Word of the day moto
motorcycle …
Cultural fact of the day

The variety of catalán spoken in the Balearic Islands is called mallorquín. Some people regard it as a separate language from Catalan, which enjoys official status, but it is not officially recognized as such.