[ frak-cher ]
See synonyms for fracture on
  1. the breaking of a bone, cartilage, or the like, or the resulting condition.: Compare comminuted fracture, complete fracture, compound fracture, greenstick fracture, simple fracture.

  2. the act of breaking; state of being broken.

  1. a break, breach, or split.

  2. the characteristic manner of breaking: a material of unpredictable fracture.

  3. the characteristic appearance of a broken surface, as of a mineral.

verb (used with object),frac·tured, frac·tur·ing.
  1. to cause or to suffer a fracture in (a bone, etc.).

  2. to break or crack.

  1. Slang. to amuse highly or cause to laugh heartily; delight: The new comic really fractured the audience.

verb (used without object),frac·tured, frac·tur·ing.
  1. to become fractured; break: a mineral that does not fracture easily.

Origin of fracture

First recorded in 1375–1425; late Middle English, from Middle French, from Latin frāctūra “a breach, cleft, fracture,” from frāct(us) “broken” (past participle of frangere “to break, shatter”; see also break) + -ūra -ure

Other words for fracture

Other words from fracture

  • frac·tur·a·ble, adjective
  • frac·tur·al, adjective
  • frac·tur·er, noun
  • post·frac·ture, adjective, noun
  • re·frac·tur·a·ble, adjective
  • re·frac·ture, verb, re·frac·tured, re·frac·tur·ing.
  • un·frac·tured, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

British Dictionary definitions for fracture


/ (ˈfræktʃə) /

  1. the act of breaking or the state of being broken

  1. a division, split, or breach

  2. mineralogy

    • the characteristic appearance of the surface of a freshly broken mineral or rock

    • the way in which a mineral or rock naturally breaks

  1. to break or cause to break; split

  2. to break or crack (a bone) or (of a bone) to become broken or cracked

  1. to tear (a cartilage) or (of a cartilage) to become torn

Origin of fracture

C15: from Old French, from Latin fractūra, from frangere to break

Derived forms of fracture

  • fracturable, adjective
  • fractural, adjective

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

Scientific definitions for fracture


[ frăkchər ]

  1. A break or rupture in bone tissue.♦ A comminuted fracture results in more than two fragments.♦ Although most fractures are caused by a direct blow or sudden, twisting force, stress fractures result from repetitive physical activity.♦ In an incomplete fracture, the fracture line does not completely traverse the bone.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.