break ranks

break ranks

(of soldiers or police officers) fail to remain in line.

fail to maintain solidarity.

Related Idioms and Phrases :

break the back of

accomplish the main or hardest part of a task

overwhelm or defeat

break the bank

(in gambling) win more money than is held by the bank.

cost more than you can afford – informal

break a butterfly on a wheel

use unnecessary force in destroying something fragile or insignificant

In former times, breaking someone upon the wheel was a form of punishment or torture which involved fastening criminals to a wheel so that their bones would be broken or dislocated.

1998 - Times - But why break a butterfly upon a wheel? What harm does the Liberal Democrat leader do? Unfortunately he may be about to do a great deal.

break a leg!

good luck! - theatrical slang

break cover

emerge into the open

suddenly leave a place of shelter.

Break cover originally referred to a hunted animal emerging from the undergrowth in which it had been hiding.

break the ice

do or say something to relieve tension or get conversation started at the start of a party or when people meet for the first time.

break the mould

put an end to a pattern of events or behaviour, especially one that has become rigid and restrictive, by doing things in a markedly different way.

Originally this phrase referred to casting artefacts in moulds : destroying a mould ensured that no further identical examples could be produced. The expression became a catchphrase in Britain in the early 1980s with the foundation of the Social Democratic Party. Its founders promoted the party as breaking the out-of-date mould of British politics, a phrase used by Roy Jenkins in a speech in 1980.

break new ground = break fresh ground

do pioneering work.

break ship

fail to rejoin your ship after absence on leave.

give me a break!

used to express contemptuous disagreement or disbelief about something that has been said.

give someone a break

stop putting pressure – informal

let one do what one can without pressure

make a break for

make a sudden dash in the direction of, usually in a bid to escape.

make a clean break

remove yourself completely and finally from a situation or relationship.

that's the breaks = them's the breaks

that's the way things turn out (used to express a resigned acceptance of a situation) – North American - informal

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