See more synonyms for breaker on
  1. a person or thing that breaks.
  2. a wave that breaks or dashes into foam.
  3. Citizens Band Radio Slang. a person who indicates a wish to transmit a message, as by breaking in on a channel.
  4. Also called breaker strip. Automotive. a strip of fabric under the tread of a pneumatic tire casing, designed to protect the carcass.
  5. Textiles.
    1. brake1(def 5).
    2. a machine that separates the fiber from foreign matter in preparation for the carding process.
  6. Also called prairie breaker. a plow with a long, low moldboard for turning virgin land.
  7. Electricity. circuit breaker.
  8. Mining.
    1. a building where coal delivered from a mine is broken up and sorted.
    2. a machine that reduces large lumps of coal or ore to a size that can be accommodated by a conveyor belt.
  9. a break dancer.
  1. Citizens Band Radio Slang. (used to announce that a person is about to transmit a message or question on a channel, especially one already in use.)

Origin of breaker

Middle English word dating back to 1125–75; see origin at break, -er1

Synonyms for breaker

See more synonyms for on
2. See wave.


noun Nautical.
  1. a small water cask for use in a boat.

Origin of breaker

1825–35; said to be alteration of Spanish bareca, variant of barrica small keg Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for breaker

surf, billow, destroyer, wave, roller

Examples from the Web for breaker

Contemporary Examples of breaker

Historical Examples of breaker

  • And from being a keeper of the law he is converted into a breaker of it?

  • Through sable sea and breaker white, the giant game to play.

  • Roma was lifted off her feet by the breaker of human beings201 that surged around.

  • I had two men with me, a bag of biscuits, a few tins of meat, and a breaker of water.


    Joseph Conrad

  • Not a soul, unless some one saw you coming into the breaker!

British Dictionary definitions for breaker


  1. a person or thing that breaks something, such as a person or firm that breaks up old cars, etc
  2. a large wave with a white crest on the open sea or one that breaks into foam on the shore
  3. electronics short for circuit breaker
  4. a machine or plant for crushing rocks or coal
  5. Also called: breaking plough a plough with a long shallow mouldboard for turning virgin land or sod land
  6. textiles a machine for extracting fibre preparatory to carding
  7. an operator on citizens' band radio


  1. a small water cask for use in a boat

Word Origin for breaker

C19: anglicized variant of Spanish barrica, from French (Gascon dialect) barrique
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for breaker

"heavy ocean wave," 1680s, agent noun from break (v.). Related: Breakers.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

breaker in Science


  1. A wave that crests or breaks into foam, as against a shoreline.
  2. A circuit breaker.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.