break down

break down(
An intransitive verb phrase is a phrase that combines a verb with a preposition or other particle and does not require a direct object (e.g. Everybody please stand up.).
intransitive verb phrase
1. (to stop functioning)
a. estropearse
The hot water heater broke down last night while I was in the shower.Anoche, se estropeó la caldera mientras estaba en la ducha.
b. averiarse
My car broke down in the middle of nowhere, so I had to hitchhike.Se averió el auto en el medio de la nada, así que tuve que hacer dedo.
c. descomponerse
Regionalism used in Latin America: all the countries in South America, Central America, and the Caribbean. Does not include Spain.
(Latin America)
The car broke down because the radiator overheated.El carro se descompuso porque el radiador se recalentó.
2. (to succumb to emotional stress)
a. derrumbarse
After working sleeplessly for weeks, he broke down and started screaming at his boss.Después de trabajar sin dormir durante semanas, se derrumbó y empezó a gritarle a su jefe.
b. echarse a llorar
When he realized she had gone for good, he broke down.Cuando se dio cuenta de que ella se había ido para siempre, se echó a llorar.
c. romper a llorar
I can't watch "Bambi" without breaking down.No puedo ver "Bambi" sin romper a llorar.
3. (to fail)
a. fracasar (negotiations)
Talks between the two countries broke down after the attack.Las negociaciones entre los dos países fracasaron tras el atentado.
4. (to divide into constituents)
a. descomponerse
As citric acid breaks down, what substance is released?¿Qué sustancia se libera al descomponerse el ácido cítrico?
A transitive verb phrase is a phrase that combines a verb with a preposition or other particle and requires a direct object (e.g. Take out the trash.).
transitive verb phrase
5. (to destroy)
a. derribar
The detective obtained a warrant and went to break down the door of the suspect.El detective obtuvo una orden de detención y se dirigió a derribar la puerta del sospechoso.
b. echar abajo
They began to break down the Berlin Wall in 1990.Empezaron a echar abajo el Muro de Berlín en 1990.
6. (to separate)
a. dividir
It's easier if we break the work down into stages.Es más fácil si dividimos el trabajo en etapas.
A phrase used as a figure of speech or a word that is symbolic in meaning; metaphorical (e.g., carrot, bean).
(to overcome)
a. vencer (resistance)
How can we break down people's resistance to change?¿Cómo podemos vencer la resistencia de la gente al cambio?
8. (to analyze)
a. desglosar (figures)
I can break down the charges on your bill so it's easier to understand.Puedo desglosar los cargos de la factura para que sea más fácil de entender.
b. descomponer
It can be difficult to break down a complicated sentence.Puede ser difícil descomponer una oración complicada.
9. (to decompose)
a. descomponer
In a hydrolysis reaction, water is used to break down a molecule.En una reacción de hidrólisis, se emplea agua para descomponer una molécula.
Copyright © Curiosity Media Inc.
break down
A transitive verb phrase is a phrase that combines a verb with a preposition or other particle and requires a direct object (e.g. Take out the trash.).
transitive verb phrase
1. (destroy; resistance)
a. vencer
2. (analyze; argument)
a. dividir
3. (figures)
a. desglosar
An intransitive verb is one that does not require a direct object (e.g. The man sneezed.).
intransitive verb
4. (car, machine)
a. estropearse, averiarse
5. (talks)
a. romperse
6. (argument)
a. fallar, desmoronarse
7. (person under pressure)
a. derrumbarse
to b down in tearsromper a llorar
Copyright © 2006 Harrap Publishers Limited
break down
transitive verb
1 (destroy) [+door etc] echar abajo; derribar; [+resistance] vencer; acabar con; [+suspicion] disipar
2 (analyse) [+figures] analizar; desglosar; [+substance] descomponer
chewing releases digestive enzymes in the saliva that break down foods so that the stomach and intestines have less work to do As fibre-rich waste products are broken down in the large bowel, a number of products are formed it uses bacteria to break down oils and fats into harmless, soluble waste worms and woodlice as well as bacteria will break down the waste into a lovely peaty substance
[+machine] estropearse; malograrse; (Peru) descomponerse; (LAm) (Aut) averiarse; descomponerse; (LAm) [+person] (under pressure) derrumbarse; (from emotion) romper or echarse a llorar; [+health] quebrantarse; [+talks etc] fracasar; [+chemicals, waste] descomponerse
the action of the enzymes causes the waste to break down their bags are designed to break down
Collins Complete Spanish Electronic Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers 2011
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