Definition of rupture in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈrʌptʃə/


1 [no object] (Especially of a pipe or container, or bodily part such as an organ or membrane) break or burst suddenly: if the main artery ruptures he could die
More example sentences
  • Then at 31 weeks into her seventh pregnancy (already complicated by placenta praevia) her membranes ruptured and premature labour ensued.
  • Swabbing a specimen should only be performed if the tympanic membrane has ruptured.
  • The mitochondria gradually swells, and eventually the outer membrane ruptures, releasing caspase-activating proteins into the cytosol. [10,32]
break, fracture, crack;
burst, split, fissure, blowout
break, fracture, crack, breach;
burst, split, tear, puncture
informal bust
1.1 [with object] Cause to break or burst suddenly: the impact ruptured both fuel tanks
More example sentences
  • A burst tire is believed to have ruptured a fuel tank, causing the fiery crash.
  • And, as if the moment couldn't turn any more unfortunate, one of these shadow spikes struck the car's fuel tank, rupturing it and causing the yellow cab to explode into shrapnel and into flames.
  • In the Oct 26 crash, a dozen cars derailed, rupturing a fuel tank and spilling 4,300 gallons of diesel onto the bank and into Cow Creek about 17 miles west of Riddle.
1.2 (be ruptured or rupture oneself) Suffer an abdominal hernia: one of the boys was ruptured and needed to be fitted with a truss
More example sentences
  • They almost ruptured themselves straining to lift it.
2 [with object] Breach or disturb (a harmonious feeling or situation): once trust and confidence has been ruptured it can be difficult to regain
More example sentences
  • An estimated 2,000 fans cheered the Shrimps onto the Division One club's pitch - but it took just two minutes for reality to rupture the excitement.
  • Labor's record in power has forever ruptured the close allegiance that millions of workers once had with the party.
  • The role of Italy in Panofsky's account of Durer's work both ruptures the alleged continuity of the German national spirit and symbolizes the enlightened tradition of humanist rationality.
sever, break, cut off, break off, breach, disrupt;
separate, divide
literary tear asunder, cleave, rend, sunder, rive
rare dissever


1An instance of breaking or bursting suddenly and completely: a small hairline crack could develop into a rupture [mass noun]: the patient died after rupture of an aneurysm
More example sentences
  • Last May, he died suddenly from an aortic rupture at the age of 44, leaving a wife and young children.
  • However, eating fish was found to have no impact on the risk of suffering a hemorrhagic stroke, where a blood vessel in the brain breaks or ruptures and causes bleeding on the brain.
  • Once an eruption is initiated, the seal ruptures, suddenly releasing massive amounts of gas, which have been accumulating within the plumbing system of the volcano.
1.1An abdominal hernia.
Example sentences
  • They represent the rupture of subepidermal connective tissue as a result of abdominal distension, either recent or remote.
  • Neither of them had had pain before the initial rupture of the second rupture.
  • Most ruptures originate during strenuous physical activities, especially basketball, tennis, football, and softball.
2A breach of a harmonious relationship: the rupture with his father would never be healed
More example sentences
  • Still, the choreography leavens the process with sudden ruptures in the pristine order.
  • The trauma of such ruptures in developmental trajectories was frequently expressed through descriptions of irreversible transformations of the identities of the victims.
  • We don't have to wait for five years to understand his political and economic philosophy through a retrospective analysis of the ruptures and trajectories of political and economic patterns.
rift, estrangement, break-up, breach, split, severance, separation, parting, division, alienation;
disagreement, quarrel, feud;
informal falling-out, bust-up
British informal row


Late Middle English (as a noun): from Old French rupture or Latin ruptura, from rumpere 'to break'. The verb dates from the mid 18th century.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: rup|ture

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