break·​neck | \ ˈbrāk-ˈnek How to pronounce breakneck (audio) \

Definition of breakneck

: very fast or dangerous breakneck speed

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Examples of breakneck in a Sentence

the breakneck production of naval vessels during World War II

Recent Examples on the Web

And then, when the rest of the nation raced ahead, industrializing and expanding at a breakneck pace, the South remained behind — the poorest American region, by far. David French, National Review, "The South Is a Pro-Life Stronghold," 11 July 2019 The extraordinary speed of its boom is forcing companies to come up with new products and services that fit what the second half wants at a breakneck pace. The Economist, "How the world’s poor are discovering leisure online," 8 June 2019 Stylistically, he’ll be compared most to Mayfield—McSorley plays a breakneck style and has piled up wins in college. Albert Breer,, "Which Quarterbacks Will Rise to the Top of the 2019 NFL Draft Class?," 10 July 2018 That’s probably hard to imagine for most designers, particularly the ones attempting to keep up with fashion’s breakneck pace. Emily Farra, Vogue, "How Aimé Leon Dore Became the Coolest Store in Nolita," 14 May 2019 The breakneck pace of hiring slumped in February, a sign that U.S. growth is cooling, though strong wage growth and earlier robust job gains suggest the economy’s near decadelong expansion will endure. Sarah Chaney, WSJ, "Hiring Slumps, Though Broad Picture Suggests Expansion Will Continue," 8 Mar. 2019 Judging by the breakneck trailer, Violet embarks on a whirlwind tour that tests her mettle in every way. Dan Barna, Teen Vogue, "Elle Fanning Stars in "Teen Spirit" Trailer as a Pop Star," 27 Dec. 2018 And items were selling fast, the register beeping at a breakneck clip as tourists snapped up mementos of their visit. Griff Witte, Washington Post, "The 5 most ridiculously capitalist souvenirs for sale at Karl Marx’s 200th birthday party," 5 May 2018 Supporting the confidence of hedge funds and other money managers: signs that heavyweight producers from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries are cutting output and the breakneck expansion in U.S. shale drilling is slowing down. Georgi Kantchev, WSJ, "Battered Oil Investors Dive Back Into Crude," 31 Jan. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'breakneck.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of breakneck

1562, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for breakneck

Last Updated

16 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for breakneck

The first known use of breakneck was in 1562

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More Definitions for breakneck



English Language Learners Definition of breakneck

: very fast : dangerously fast


break·​neck | \ ˈbrāk-ˌnek How to pronounce breakneck (audio) \

Kids Definition of breakneck

: very fast or dangerous breakneck speed

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More from Merriam-Webster on breakneck

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with breakneck

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for breakneck

Spanish Central: Translation of breakneck

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