- The definition of a break in is an illegal entry into a house, building or vehicle.
An example of a break in is a robbery of a store.
- A break in is defined as the first usage or experience with something.
An example of break in is the first month of driving a new car.
This forcible entry to this house is a break-in.Licensed from iStockPhoto
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
- A forcible entry, as into a building or room, for an illegal purpose, especially theft.
- An initial period of employment or operation during which the performance of a person or thing may be evaluated and adjusted.
break-in - Phrases/Idioms
Enter by force, as in The thieves broke in through the back door. [Mid-1500s]Also see break into.
Also, break in on. Interrupt or disturb something unexpectedly, as in His assistant broke in with the bad news just as we were ready to sign the agreement, or He broke in on our private talks. [Mid-1600s]
Train or instruct someone in a new job or enterprise, as in Every semester she had to break in a new teaching assistant. [Late 1700s]
Loosen or soften with use, as in It takes a while to break in a pair of new shoes.