What happens when two words sound the same and have meanings that are somewhat related? Well, it can get extra confusing! Homophones are tricky enough as they are. But they’re not impossible to tackle, even if they’re related beyond their pronunciation. Break vs brake is no exception to this. Learn the trick to mastering the break vs brake confusion, so you’ll never find yourself interchanging these two words again. But first, let’s take a look at what each word means and when to use it.
As a noun, break could refer to an interruption, or it could mean a crack caused by pressure. But break could also act as a verb. When used as a verb, it could mean to destroy something, or to a lesser degree, separate something into parts. The past tense of break is broke, and when turned into an adjective, break becomes broken.
A brake is often associated with vehicles. As a noun, it is the part of the car that interrupts motion and ultimately leads the car to a stop. It can also be used as a verb to refer to the action of using said device.
Since both words have to do with an interruption, it’s not unlikely to still interchange these words despite knowing their meanings. To better remember which is which, let’s use this little rhyme that helps associate each word to its definition.
If E and A are stuck together, it could mean either rest or shatter. But if A comes after R, it’s the thing that stops a car.
With this easy trick, you’ll no longer be mixing this pair of homophones up. So when it comes to break vs brake, don’t break down if you get confused. Hit the brakes on that train of thought and just remember the rhyme to help get you by.