breaking point


the point at which a person, object, structure, etc., collapses under stress.
the point at which a situation or condition becomes critical.

Origin of breaking point

First recorded in 1895–1900 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for breaking point

tension, overextension

Examples from the Web for breaking point

Historical Examples of breaking point

  • Fate recognised that there would come a breaking-point, and relented in time.

  • Was this the final crash of a brain driven to breaking-point?

    The Golden Woman

    Ridgwell Cullum

  • As for driving them to breaking-point, I think you need not fear for that.

  • He had been strained by something or other to the breaking-point—so much was evident.

    IT and Other Stories

    Gouverneur Morris

  • The cords in his neck stood out like strings drawn to the breaking-point.

    Long Live the King

    Mary Roberts Rinehart

British Dictionary definitions for breaking point

breaking point


the point at which something or someone gives way under strain
the moment of crisis in a situation
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

breaking point in Medicine

breaking point



The point at which physical, mental, or emotional strength gives way under stress.
The point at which a condition or situation becomes critical.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.