From Middle English tobreken (“to break apart, break in pieces, shatter”), from Old English tōbrecan, tebrecan (“to break in pieces, break apart”), from Proto-Germanic *tebrekaną (“to break apart”), equivalent to to- (“apart, in pieces”) + break. Cognate with Old Saxon tebrekan (“to break apart”), Middle Dutch tebreken (“to break apart, shatter”), German zerbrechen (“to break apart, shatter, smash”). More at to, break.
- (transitive, intransitive, archaic) To break completely; crush.
- And a certain woman cast a piece of a millstone upon Abimelech's head, and all tobrake his skull. --Judges 9:53, KJV
- (transitive, intransitive, obsolete) To break apart; break in pieces.
- And in the floor, with nose and mouth tobroke, They walwe as doon two pigges in a poke --Chaucer, The Reeve's Tale