Definition of broken in English:

broken

verb

adjective

  • 1Having been broken:

    ‘he had a broken arm’
    • ‘A week in a coma and three months in hospital were about right for his fractured skull and pelvis, broken leg, arm and collarbone.’
    • ‘He suffered two broken legs, two broken arms, a broken collarbone and head injuries in the accident which happened in Bullar Road, Bitterne.’
    • ‘Joey was taken to the hospital with a broken arm and some bruises.’
    • ‘The journey of a thousand miles begins with a broken fan belt and a leaky tire.’
    • ‘And he'd collapse in sobs as his broken leg and arm twitch in painful spasms from the sudden movement.’
    • ‘We know she suffered a wound to her head as well as a broken arm, and broken legs, and a spinal injury, and her physical pain was clearly reflected in her strained smile.’
    • ‘The Three Horseshoes Mall has seen an increase in crime including broken drainpipes, smashed bottles and graffiti daubed on shop windows.’
    • ‘Left in a building, Isa crawled through a broken fan vent at 3 am and ran for help.’
    • ‘Last month's dispatches from the olive groves report internationals with broken ribs, broken arms and other injuries.’
    • ‘Arming myself with some broken furniture I crept back downstairs.’
    • ‘Accidents may be inevitable in such a risk-taking environment, but the worst that has happened in three years is two broken arms and one broken leg.’
    • ‘Playgrounds in Iqaluit are great, but I'm worried about the safety because they're always broken.’
    • ‘About 750 of its residents are homeless, and many are sick, some with broken bones.’
    • ‘If a tooth has been broken, or weakened by a lot of decay or a large filling, a crown can be fitted to strengthen it.’
    • ‘Everyone survived but the poor girl has her arm broken and several stitches.’
    • ‘He suffered a broken arm, broken ribs and wounds to his head and upper body and was taken to Waterford Regional Hospital.’
    • ‘Anne still had no money, no good job prospects, poor health, broken plumbing, and three scarred kids.’
    • ‘When I told her the name of the backpacker hostel, where I had a stuffy room with a broken fan, she immediately suggested we go there.’
    • ‘There's no quick or easy way to clean up a broken bottle of maple syrup.’
    • ‘The council has revealed potential health hazards, like broken rails and track wear and tear, have led to the closure.’
    fractured, damaged, injured, maimed, crippled, lame
    smashed, shattered, burst, fragmented, splintered, shivered, crushed, snapped, rent, torn, ruptured, separated, severed, in bits, in pieces
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    1. 1.1 (of a relationship) ended, typically through infidelity:
      ‘a broken marriage’
      • ‘She wanted to start re-establishing her broken relationship with her sister.’
      • ‘Saying that you are sorry and meaning it is the first step to healing a broken relationship.’
      • ‘They tell of a sad trip through a winter landscape away from a broken love-affair.’
      • ‘A broken relationship with a boyfriend dealt a serious blow to her confidence and again was made out to be a major catastrophe.’
      • ‘How does one deal with the pain of broken relationships, especially if the breakup was not by mutual agreement?’
      • ‘Jennifer Lopez has blamed her plethora of broken relationships on her fear of being alone.’
      • ‘The last month had been hell for both of us with broken relationships to deal with on top of finals to complete.’
      • ‘Many of our clients have this view of life, they have a history of broken relationships, either with their parents or their girl friends/wives.’
      • ‘Also, Frank's broken relationship with Brenda leaves something to be desired in the way of resolution.’
      • ‘Kelly, had a broken relationship that causing was her a great deal of distress.’
      • ‘Maggie is fleeing a broken relationship when she encounters a teenage girl on the train.’
      • ‘It is often not easy to mend a broken relationship in a women's group.’
      failed, ended
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  • 2(of a person) having given up all hope; despairing:

    ‘he went to his grave a broken man’
    • ‘As he shuffled into court, his hands and legs chained, Nick du Toit looked a broken man.’
    • ‘Yet the notion of Clinton as a broken man is one with which he will have no truck.’
    • ‘As the contemporary story begins it's that broken kid, Dave, we first focus on, now a damaged adult.’
    • ‘This is the story of how a broken person forms his identity and forges his armour.’
    • ‘From then on, the Eagles looked a broken team, worn down by the heat of the day and the determined efforts of the Knights to match their powerful pack.’
    • ‘There is something more remarkable still, for the Lord has a response to these broken people.’
    • ‘Mr Crowe is compelling as the broken scientist with a heavy conscience.’
    • ‘They were all looking at him, every one of the kids, as they saw what a broken person he had become.’
    • ‘Johnny Bonner is one of the broken people of the world but he's kept alive by being part of a river of song, and he needs to share it.’
    • ‘But he then appeared quite a broken person as he was led away, didn't say any further words.’
    • ‘The accident has left her a broken woman and an inadequate mother to their young daughter, Ruthie.’
    • ‘These broken people who may never have the chance to lead normal and fruitful lives are not completely in despair.’
    • ‘Mary was one of those broken people, a life thwarted from what it could be.’
    • ‘We are, many of us, aware that we're not perfect, that we are in fact broken people.’
    • ‘About an hour and a half later, I was a broken woman.’
    • ‘Tom Fitzpatrick, defending, said Turner was a broken man.’
    • ‘Lorry driver Kevin Callan died a broken man at the age of 45.’
    • ‘A broken man, Sheriff flees into exile on an oil tanker and declares himself a refugee when the ship reaches international waters.’
    • ‘He died a broken man and was buried only a couple of miles away from his birthplace.’
    • ‘In the end the brave man who survived the Normandy landings had to admit defeat and it left him a broken man.’
    defeated, beaten, vanquished, overpowered, overwhelmed, subdued
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  • 3Having breaks or gaps in continuity:

    ‘a broken white line across the road’
    • ‘Do you see the arrow points to a broken line, and adjacent to the broken line is the letter.’
    • ‘What is the point of painting double parallel, barred white lines down the middle of the road, when a single broken white line has told us for years where the middle of the road is?’
    • ‘A bright, vermilion ground has been almost obliterated by some 17 rectangles meeting on broken lines.’
    • ‘Because the weather is continuing in such a broken fashion, it will mean delays of up to five or six weeks for most farmers.’
    • ‘What is shown is a broken line whose starting and ending points are denoted by the same letter.’
    • ‘The broken continuity can be explained in terms of Marxist value theory.’
    • ‘Most of the Mfengu designs of that period were lozenges, broken lines, triangles, and stripes.’
    • ‘Fourteen dancers explored intricate movement and gestures, broken lines and dissected flows.’
    • ‘They have yellow eyes and facial disks that are mostly white, edged with broken black rings.’
    • ‘The results from both are given in the graphs as separate curves in broken lines and they are quite similar.’
    • ‘High above the building rooftop across the alley birds flew a broken black line in blue night sky.’
    • ‘If the area is bordered by a broken white line, you should not enter the area unless it is necessary and you can see that it is safe to do so.’
    • ‘Instead, he makes allusions to history and social realities through bold, broken lines.’
    • ‘The broken lines represent limiting values based on data of Burton.’
    • ‘Witness Mr Fogarty an engineer agreed with this, stating that it was not a good place to overtake and that the broken white line was misleading.’
    • ‘Whilst considering the other end of the road I have noticed that at the roundabout there you find broken lines crossing the carriageway at an oblique angle.’
    • ‘Data points for control plants are joined by broken lines for clarity.’
    • ‘A broken white line meant to divide the street into lanes inexplicably bends, crossing it.’
    • ‘The broken line has arrows pointing to both B and C; this indicates that the similarity relation may also go in both ways.’
    • ‘I felt I was there for a reason: to finally connect two ends of a long broken line.’
    interrupted, disturbed, fitful, disrupted, disconnected, discontinuous, fragmentary, intermittent, unsettled, sporadic, spasmodic, erratic, troubled, incomplete
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    1. 3.1 (of a language) spoken falteringly and with many mistakes, as by a foreigner:
      ‘a young man talking in broken Italian’
      • ‘In fact it might even pay to speak broken English, perhaps with a Norwegian accent, when striding around ex-British colonies.’
      • ‘Campana, speaking in broken English, said he had no idea his fiancée would be in the city.’
      • ‘I grabbed a taxi and spoke in my broken Korean for The White Swan Hotel.’
      • ‘The complainant, Cappelli, is an Italian gentleman, speaking in broken English.’
      • ‘When the man reappeared, along with several others, Buckner began to speak to them in broken English.’
      • ‘Han prefers to employ Asian males who can speak broken English.’
      • ‘He spoke in broken English and claimed to be Italian.’
      • ‘It's very frustrating being ridiculed or ignored when using my broken French in a social setting.’
      • ‘When you picked up the phone in some of the command units you didn't get a dial tone but a male voice speaking in broken Arabic.’
      • ‘The Press of Atlantic City interviewed Kuras, who spoke in confused, broken English.’
      • ‘He knew that it was broken French, but he'd only been in that class for two whole months now.’
      • ‘The only people she would be able to talk to in English would be Ovidiu, and marginally to Rica with the broken language he was still trying to learn.’
      • ‘As I replied to a question in broken French, the people around me instantly became aware of my language barrier.’
      • ‘I can't speak French so I started yelling back at him in broken German.’
      • ‘Mike started to speak, but only broken sentences and grunts came out.’
      • ‘Issac cannot even speak broken English, and there are efforts to install him as a coach.’
      • ‘The crew came out but Andria said they were speaking in broken English, before emergency crews began the rescue operation.’
      • ‘Conversing in Arabic just might be beyond most of us, but striking up the odd conversation in broken French ought to be manageable.’
      • ‘The Christian family speaks broken Hindi and girls in the family dress up in the way that leaves you wondering why at all!’
      • ‘Now it has emerged he speaks only broken English and needed an interpreter to sit with him at his first full council meeting.’
      halting, hesitating, disjointed, faltering, stumbling, stammering, stuttering, imperfect
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  • 4Having an uneven and rough surface:

    ‘he pressed onwards over the broken ground’
    • ‘Just short of the summit of the bealach climb the broken and craggy slopes west to a ridge high above the Garbh Coire of Ben Alder.’
    • ‘Comfort for passengers was good at all times, even on the most broken surfaces, though the ride often feels quite firm.’
    • ‘Three hours later, we finally shake the sand off our boots onto the broken, rocky surface of Ice Valley.’
    • ‘Yet its weight and density provided my only hope of getting near the broken ground and the bass.’
    • ‘The impact of each bolt tore deep wounds in the broken ground, sending the survivors reeling backward.’
    • ‘Rianey was running for the broken ground ahead, where she'd have some cover.’
    • ‘The Seat, you feel, could cope as well with a buckled road across a midlands bog as with the broken surfaces in towns and cities.’
    • ‘Its suspension easily absorbed broken street surfaces and the precise steering made it easy to place in traffic.’
    • ‘It sounded like the ground was pursing it's lips as diggers shuffled their boots on the broken ground underfoot.’
    • ‘Cross broken ground and follow the line of fence posts to the top of the hill.’
    • ‘The suspension copes well with our broken streets and bumpy corners hold no fears for it.’
    • ‘Two ambulances had appeared from somewhere behind the tanks and were bumping and bucking as fast as their drivers dared take them across the broken ground.’
    • ‘The road was uneven, full of random stones and broken asphalt, thrusting themselves in all directions.’
    • ‘If the ground you are casting onto has areas of broken rocky ground or shallow reef, then fish will feed through the ebb tide as well.’
    • ‘I found it did get unsettled when pushed hard on broken surfaces.’
    • ‘Although you can hear bangs as the car rides over the broken surfaces, comfort levels for occupants remain very good.’
    • ‘Of course patches of gravel might not be bars they may be just broken ground with the same depth as surrounding water, still good features though.’
    • ‘When the eggs are ready, the female deposits each egg in turn on the sea bed, generally in areas of broken ground, where the eggs can be anchored to rocks.’
    • ‘Mainly found over broken ground, small eels are less discerning in their choice of habitat.’
    • ‘Through a slick sheen of soft rain the broken surfaces of the pavement spread out before me.’
    uneven, rough, irregular, bumpy
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Pronunciation

broken

/ˈbrəʊk(ə)n/