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noun break·down \ˈbrāk-ˌdau̇n\

Simple Definition of breakdown

  • : a failure of a machine to function : an occurrence in which a machine (such as a car) stops working

  • : the failure of a relationship or of an effort to discuss something

  • : a failure that prevents a system from working properly

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of breakdown

  1. 1 :  the action or result of breaking down: as a :  a failure to function b :  failure to progress or have effect :  disintegration <a breakdown of negotiations> c :  a physical, mental, or nervous collapse d :  the process of decomposing e :  division into categories :  classification; also :  an account analyzed into categories

  2. 2 :  a fast shuffling dance; also :  music for such a dance

Examples of breakdown in a sentence

  1. The factory has had frequent equipment breakdowns.

  2. Both sides are to blame for the breakdown in communication.

  3. The irretrievable breakdown of a marriage can be grounds for divorce.

  4. trying to prevent a breakdown of the health-care system

  5. trying to prevent breakdown of the health-care system

  6. He suffered a breakdown after his wife died.


First Known Use of breakdown


Rhymes with breakdown

back down, Baytown, bear down, blowdown, boil down, boomtown, break down, Bridgetown, bringdown, bring down, call down, Cape Town, cast down, Charlestown, clampdown, clamp down, climb down, closedown, comedown, come down, cooldown, countdown, count down, count noun, cow town, crackdown, crack down, crosstown, cry down, cut down, downtown, drawdown, draw down, dress down, drop-down, dumb down, embrown, facedown, fall down, first down, Freetown, Georgetown, George Town, get down, ghost town, godown, go down, half crown, hand down, hands-down, hoedown, hold down, hometown, hull down, Jamestown, keep down, knockdown, knock down, lay down, letdown, let down, lie down, live down, lockdown, look down, lowdown, markdown, mark down, mass noun, meltdown, melt down, midtown, new town, nightgown, North Down, nut-brown, pastedown, pat down, pay down, phase down, pipe down, play down, plunk down, pronoun, pull-down, pull down, pushdown, put-down, renown, rubdown, rundown, scale-down, set down, shakedown, shake down, shire town, shoot down, showdown, shutdown, shut down, sit-down, slap down, slowdown, Southdown, splashdown, splash down, stand-down, stare down, step-down, stop down, strike down, stripped-down, sundown, swansdown, take down, talk down, tank town, tea gown, tear down, throw down, thumbs-down, tie-down, top-down, touchdown, touch down, trade down, turndown, turn down, uncrown, uptown, Von Braun, wash down, wear down, weigh down, wet down, wind down, write-down, write down, Youngstown

BREAKDOWN Defined for Kids


noun break·down \ˈbrāk-ˌdau̇n\

Definition of breakdown for Students

  1. 1 :  a failure to function properly

  2. 2 :  a sudden failure of mental or physical health

Medical Dictionary



noun break·down \ˈbrāk-ˌdau̇n\

Medical Definition of breakdown

  1. :  the action or result of breaking down: asa:  a failure to functionb:  a physical, mental, or nervous collapsec:  the process of decomposing <breakdown of food during digestion>



adjective break·down

Medical Definition of breakdown

  1. :  obtained or resulting from disintegration or decomposition of a substance <a breakdown product of purine>

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