fragment

noun
frag·​ment | \ ˈfrag-mənt How to pronounce fragment (audio) \

Definition of fragment

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a part broken off, detached, or incomplete The dish lay in fragments on the floor.

fragment

verb
frag·​ment | \ ˈfrag-ˌment How to pronounce fragment (audio) \
fragmented; fragmenting; fragments

Definition of fragment (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to fall to pieces

transitive verb

: to break up or apart into fragments

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Synonyms for fragment

Synonyms: Noun

bit, fraction, piece, scrap

Synonyms: Verb

break, break up, bust, disintegrate, dismember, disrupt, fracture, rive

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Choose the Right Synonym for fragment

Noun

part, portion, piece, member, division, section, segment, fragment mean something less than the whole. part is a general term appropriate when indefiniteness is required. they ran only part of the way portion implies an assigned or allotted part. cut the pie into six portions piece applies to a separate or detached part of a whole. a puzzle with 500 pieces member suggests one of the functional units composing a body. a structural member division applies to a large or diversified part. the manufacturing division of the company section applies to a relatively small or uniform part. the entertainment section of the newspaper segment applies to a part separated or marked out by or as if by natural lines of cleavage. the retired segment of the population fragment applies to a part produced by or as if by breaking off. only a fragment of the play still exists

Examples of fragment in a Sentence

Noun

The dish lay in fragments on the floor. I could only hear fragments of their conversation.

Verb

The party is fragmenting into warring factions. These issues are fragmenting our society. The property is being fragmented into subdivisions.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Characters keep tossing around fragments of prophecies whose origins are never properly contextualized and whose predictions are never fully explained. Aja Romano, Vox, "Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald feels like a giant prologue for some other movie," 17 Nov. 2018 This can leave a fragment of hair under the skin surface and cause inflammation. Korin Miller, SELF, "We Asked Dermatologists How to Prevent Those Painful Ingrown Hairs by Your Vulva," 8 Aug. 2018 For more than a century, the origin of cosmic rays — fragments of atoms that rain down on the Earth at close to the speed of light — had been one of the great mysteries in science, thwarting the best minds in physics. Mark Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Blazing a trail: UW professor's dream leads to breakthrough in identifying origin of cosmic rays," 12 July 2018 Over the fireplace is a wooden fragment of a ship from the 16th century, on which is sculpted, according to Brito e Abreu, figure of a mermaid. Gisela Williams, ELLE Decor, "A Portuguese Family Manor is Transformed Into a Heritage-Rich Island Getaway," 17 Sep. 2018 Some of them share specific traits with each other, like the same orbital angles, which makes the scientists think that these moons are actually fragments of three larger moons. Loren Grush, The Verge, "Astronomers have found a new crop of moons around Jupiter, and one of them is a weirdo," 17 July 2018 Under Islamic State’s rule, headstones were deemed religiously forbidden and smashed—the stone fragments still scattered throughout the old part of the cemetery. Raja Abdulrahim, WSJ, "To Rebuild a Syrian City, Men First Dig Up and Rebury the Dead," 26 Oct. 2018 Don’t set off fireworks in glass or metal containers — the fragments can cause severe injury. Gabe Hauari, The Courier-Journal, "Can I shoot fireworks in Louisville? Your July 4 questions answered," 28 June 2018 The rock fragments were heated to more than 900 degrees Fahrenheit, and the rover’s instruments looked at the molecules that wafted away at the high temperatures. Kenneth Chang, New York Times, "Life on Mars? Rover’s Latest Discovery Puts It ‘On the Table’," 7 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

This power vacuum will also attract even more candidates, fragmenting Brazilian politics further and making October’s race one of the most unpredictable in the nation’s short democracy. Samantha Pearson And Luciana Magalhaes, WSJ, "Brazilian Judge Orders Ex-President to Start Jail term," 5 Apr. 2018 Civilian owners of military-style weapons can also buy soft-nosed or hollow-point ammunition, often used for hunting, that lacks a full metal jacket and can expand and fragment on impact. New York Times, "Wounds From Military-Style Rifles? ‘A Ghastly Thing to See’," 4 Mar. 2018 When asked by the Guardian about why people weren’t getting vaccinated, experts in England spoke mainly of an increasingly strapped and fragmented National Health Service, the country’s public health system. Julia Belluz, Vox, "Measles cases have hit a record high in Europe. Blame austerity.," 24 Sep. 2018 The permit and inspection regimes are fragmented, explains Baca. Angela Chen, The Verge, "Why solar is likely to power the Home of the Future," 13 Aug. 2018 This sudden shift in demand from China has fragmented the iron-ore market, with prices climbing for certain kinds of ore with higher iron content. Rhiannon Hoyle, WSJ, "China’s Cleanup Efforts Create Boom for South African Miner," 4 Aug. 2018 Historically, the home-building industry was fragmented, made up of small building companies producing homes in volumes that matched local demand. Jeff Andrews, Curbed, "10 years after the financial crisis, is the housing market still at risk?," 29 Aug. 2018 PEPTIDES Tiny protein fragments that promote collagen growth and help repair skin. Allure, "The Skin-Care Glossary: A Comprehensive Guide to Everything You Need to Know," 17 Aug. 2018 Most bombs use a steel casing that fragments into deadly shrapnel, but this would be unnecessary (and dangerous) when fighting fires. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Should the U.S. Air Force Bomb Forest Fires?," 8 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fragment.' 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 fragment

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1818, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for fragment

Noun

Middle English, borrowed from Latin fragmentum, from frag-, variant stem of frangere "to break, shatter" + -mentum -ment — more at break entry 1

Verb

derivative of fragment entry 1

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Statistics for fragment

Last Updated

11 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fragment

The first known use of fragment was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for fragment

fragment

noun

English Language Learners Definition of fragment

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a broken part or piece of something
: an incomplete part

fragment

verb

English Language Learners Definition of fragment (Entry 2 of 2)

: to break or to cause (something) to break into parts or pieces

fragment

noun
frag·​ment | \ ˈfrag-mənt How to pronounce fragment (audio) \

Kids Definition of fragment

: a broken or incomplete part a fragment of rock a fragment of music

fragment

noun
frag·​ment | \ ˈfrag-mənt How to pronounce fragment (audio) \

Medical Definition of fragment

: a part broken off or detached

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More from Merriam-Webster on fragment

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fragment

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fragment

Spanish Central: Translation of fragment

Nglish: Translation of fragment for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fragment for Arabic Speakers

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