American English

Definition of breakdown noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[countable] an occasion when a vehicle or machine stops working a breakdown on the highway a breakdown recovery service
  2. 2[countable, uncountable] a failure of a relationship, discussion, or system the breakdown of a marriage marriage breakdown a breakdown in communications The breakdown of the negotiations was not unexpected. the breakdown of law and order
  3. 3[countable, usually singular] detailed information that you get by studying a set of figures First, let's look at a breakdown of the costs.
  4. 4[uncountable] (technology) the breaking of a substance into the parts of which it is made the breakdown of proteins in the digestive system
  5. 5[countable] = nervous breakdown She's still recovering from her breakdown.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: breakdown