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1(in gambling) win more money than is held by the bank:‘winning the pools was the equivalent of breaking the bank at Monte Carlo’
- ‘He breaks the bank, but when he offers Paulina the money to buy off the marquis, she is ashamed and hurls it back at him in disgust.’
- ‘On the drive home, I kept chuckling and whistling, ‘He's the man who broke the bank at Monte Carlo’!’
- 1.1informal [usually with negative] Cost more than one can afford:‘at £30, the shirts won't break the bank’
- ‘One might argue that some of the existing members just wouldn't be able to afford it but would £1 per week really break the bank?’
- ‘The cost of fitted shelves and units can break the bank.’
- ‘Four important players were making next to nothing, allowing the team to win without breaking the bank.’
- ‘However, a week in the fjords in summer or cross-country skiing in winter doesn't have to break the bank, and many tour operators offer affordable packages.’
- ‘You could still afford an exclusive bridal service without breaking the bank!’
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